New generation wide single truck tires are now approved for widespread use across Canada.

The Council of Ministers Responsible for Transportation and Highway Safety has approved amendments to Canada's Memorandum of Understanding on Vehicle Weights and Dimensions that redefine the weight limits and track width requirements for new generation wide base single tires.

The changes, which are scheduled to become effective on July 1, will establish requirements for trucks that are consistent with U.S. regulations and will allow trucks and trailers equipped with wide base tires to operate from coast to coast and move freely between both countries.

The new rules apply to tires used on drive axles with a width of 445 mm or more. The new weight allowances call for loads not to exceed 7,700 kg for single axle vehicles and 15,400 kg for tandem-axle groups. To allow trailers to be safely retrofitted with wide single tires, the minimum track width requirement of 2.5 m has been reduced to 2.3 m for trailers built in
2007 or earlier.

"In the wake of soaring fuel costs, this news is welcome relief to truckers and fleets operating between the two countries," said Marc Laferriere, vice president of marketing, Michelin Americas Truck Tires, which makes Michelin X One wide base tires. "Michelin X One tires can improve fuel efficiency by up to 10 percent and allow for significantly larger payloads. This revised MOU offers a boost to fleet profitability and helps control rising transportation costs for the goods each of us buys each day."

The official update, issued by the Canadian government, acknowledges "that the new wide base single tire designs offer improvements in fuel efficiency, vehicle roll stability and reduced tare weight."

The rules will be in effect for all Canadian provinces, with three regional exceptions. These pertain to roads in the Northwest Territories, secondary roads in Newfoundland and Labrador, and roads in New Brunswick, depending on their highway classification.