According to the Montreal Gazette, containers continued to roll in and out of the port yesterday, even as protests by the truckers continued. Police stood by at entry points to the port to monitor the situation.
"As of 4 p.m. there were 1,800 movements [of containers either into or out of the port]," said spokesman Michel Turgeon. "Normally, the daily number is between 1,200 and 1,500."
At the current rate, the backlog of containers in yards in the Montreal area and at the port should be cleared in about two weeks, Turgeon told the paper.
However, union spokesman Henri Goulet contradicted Turgeon’s report, saying rain Tuesday prevented the union from taking aerial photographs of the port and yard areas that would provide them with a true picture of the backlog.
About 900 truckers who work for companies that do most of their business through the Port of Montreal have been on strike since Oct. 22.
Company drivers and owner-operators have signed on with the Confederation of National Trade Unions, and are asking their employers to negotiate an industry-wide collective agreement that would deal with salaries, pensions, health plans and other issues. The employers have refused to recognize the union as the truckers' bargaining agent.
Quebec’s provincial government passed back-to-work legislation two weeks ago that levies stiff fines on truckers and union officials for each day the strike continues. And according to the trucking companies they work for, many truckers also stand to lose their jobs if they don’t return to work.