ATA September / October 2022

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atlantic VOLUME TWENTY TWO • ISSUE 5 • SEPTEMBER / OCTOBER • 2022

DEPARTMENTS Page 4

EDITOR’S LETTER – Carter Hammett shines a spotlight on this issue’s focus: women with drive!

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TALK OF THE TOWN – For centuries the Shriners have devoted themselves to building communites. So don’t be surprised if you happen to see them at your local race track, writes Sean Maddox

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NEWS OF THE WEIRD – Wannabe car thief must learn to grin and bear it in our latest roundup of strange and bizarre auto tales collected from around the globe.

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ELECTRIC AVENUE – EV clinics are just the latest reason to explore the power and possibility of electric vehicles writes contributor Jeremie Bernardin.

PUBLISHER / OWNER Robert Alfers (902) 452-0345 rob@autoatlantic.com

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THE ATLANTIC ROAD REPORT – P.E.I. eases driver’s license process for newlyarrived Ukrainians.

EDITOR Carter Hammett carter@autoatlantic.com

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WOMEN WITH DRIVE! – As we slowly move into a post-pandemic reality, fleet managers struggle with how to manage a shrinking workforce. One solution? Attract non-traditional communities, including women, writes Kristen Lipscombe.

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“A VERY REWARDING CAREER” – Haley Geldart is that rarity in the EV world: a female apprentice with a bright future.

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MYTHBUSTING: – Despite the growing interest in electric vehicles, insurance expert Tanisha Kishan says most consumers hold a dated view of these monsters of the future and Other Flights of Fancy.

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FIX AUTO DRIVING CHANGE – Meet Andrea Ghaney and Katherine Gordillo, two Atlantic women making an impact in the automotive world.

E-mail us: rob@autoatlantic.com Mail us: 608 - 56 Jacob Lane Bedford, NS B3M 0H5 Canada

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INDUSTRY SPOTLIGHT: WOMEN WITH DRIVE!

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“ALL ABOUT CUSTOMER SATISFACTION” - New NAPA Auto Pro opens its doors for business in Clarenville NFLD.

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QC ZERO EMISSION SALES MANDATE – Pundits respond to Quebec’s “revised” targets for zero emissions. They are not happy.

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THE WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY – Our very own mindful trucker Dana Smith revisits a life-altering decision with no regrets.

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PET WASH PROFIT STRESS AND MESS-FREE BATH TIME – Just like your car, pets sometimes need a good wash too. Meline Beach explains.

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RITE OF PASSAGE – A primer for New Canadians looking to hit the road.

Opinions expressed in Auto & Trucking Atlantic do not necessarily reflect official policy of Alfers Advertising & Publishing Inc. Printed and produced in Canada.

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Letter from the Editor

THE OTHER HALF OF THE SKY

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By Carter Hammett

OR THE FIRST TIME IN THIS MAGAZINE’S HISTORY WE’VE DECIDED TO TURN THE SPOTLIGHT ON WOMEN.

That’s not to say this is the first time, we’ve covered women and driving issues between our covers, but this is the first time we’ve devoted this degree of space and coverage to the issue. Why now? It’s a well-known fact that there continues to be an ongoing driver shortage in our great industry but women represent only about three-to-three-and-a-half percent of Canada’s 300,000 drivers. That’s barely a blip on anyone’s radar when you realize that women make up 47% of the Canadian workforce. According to freightwaves.com, women actually make up about 47% of the trucking business but the majority of those positions are women in management, administrative or support positions like dispatchers. And while recruiting and mentoring initiatives are having some success in

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luring females to the profession, growth is slow. COVID hasn’t helped but there’s other perceived barriers as well. Chief among these is probably safety. Women in over-the-road driving roles are still concerned about personal safety in places like strange parking lots or truck stops, especially when overnight stops are concerned. Many women thus opt for local driving roles that keep them closer to home. And “home” is another concern. Like their male counterparts, women have work-life balance issues to be concerned about. The road can be a lonely place that takes workers away from home and family for days or weeks at a time. It’s no secret that many drivers put in longer hours to top up their earnings but at what cost? The very design of trucks themselves can also be challenges for women who

tend to be short in stature. Trucks are traditionally designed for wide-framed men, and while trucks often include various steering wheel modifications and seat adjustments, women may still find it uncomfortable maintain a comfortable and effective driving position. But it’s also important to note the perks as well. Women, even those new to the profession are enticed by salaries that are comparable to those of their male counterparts. There’s often good benefits packages not to mention the perceived “freedom of the road” that’s also a powerful lure. But the industry is also becoming more organized and events like Trucking HR Canada’s Women with Drive or the Trucking Human Resources Sector Council Atlantic’s mentoring programs are helping women find their place in an industry poised for change. We encourage you to take a few moments and let women like Tanisha Kishan introduce themselves. Kishan has a few interesting things to say about electric vehicles and their place in the Canadian landscape. Likewise, people like Andrea Ghaney from Fix Auto St. John’s Avalon (Newfoundland) and Katherine Gordillo of Fix Auto Charlottetown (PEI) are making inroads in the industry. Both are recognized as part of the “Women of Fix Network” series. The series is part of Fix Network’s efforts to promote women’s representation in the aftermarket industry. These are just some of the women you’ll meet this issue and the initiatives that you’ll read about that are currently happening in the automotive and trucking industries. Kristen Lipscombe’s feature this issue will indeed raise a few eyebrows while shedding light on women’s status in an evershifting sector. Indeed, the time has come to recognize that women have a vital role to play within the multi-levelled transport industry and much to say about changes that need to occur, including raising the presence of women of colour. So, get a cuppa jo, get comfy and enjoy the people you’re about to meet.



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Truckers Corner

WOMEN WITH DRIVE! TRUCKING HR, WOMEN IN TRUCKING AND WOMEN’S TRUCKING FEDERATION OF CANADA, ALL COMMITTED TO GENDER DIVERSITY ON & OFF HIGHWAYS . . .

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By Kristen Lipscombe

ET’S FACE IT. WHEN MOST PEOPLE THINK OF THE TYPICAL TRUCK DRIVER, WE LIKELY THINK OF MIDDLE AGE TO OLDER WHITE MEN SITTING ATOP BIG RIGS THAT DRIVE PAST US ON HIGHWAYS AND FREEWAYS ACROSS THE CONTINENT. And that’s because that stereotype is, unfortunately, pretty darn accurate. “Currently, the average driver is a white male in his 50s,” said Ellen Voie, President and CEO of Women In Trucking (WIT), a non-profit organization based in Plover, Wis., that’s dedicated to improving diversity in the industry, which means employing – and celebrating – the women who choose to get behind the wheel of large scale trucks and haul much-needed freight across long distances to meet our everyday needs. “We need to attract more women, more minorities, and more younger drivers,” Voie told Auto and Trucking Atlantic, adding that in order to do so, “we need to understand their work-life requirements and work hard to accommodate them.” That’s why WIT, which now includes 7,000 members spread across 10 countries including Canada, and continues to expand, works to reach out to females of all ages to encourage them to picture themselves actually working in the industry, including through a scholarship foundation which offers tuition grants for women interested in entering the industry. And when they do make a career of

it, WIT makes sure to recognize the individual accomplishments of females who are excelling – or perhaps “accelerating” – through initiatives such as the Member of the Month and Driver Ambassador programs. “Many women don’t picture themselves in transportation careers,” Voie said. “For professional drivers, the challenge is that they have a misconception about what is involved in driving a tractortrailer. They often think they can’t learn to shift or back-up a 53-foot trailer, and they often assume they need to be big and burly to handle the freight and mechanical to fix things. “But these are all misconceptions,” Voie emphasized. “Automated transmissions and no-touch freight and highly technical engines… are the norm today. And women can certainly back up a trailer… We have to address these stereotypes of our industry.” In fact, women are actually proven to be safer on the road. According to the American Transportation Research Institute, “male commercial drivers are 20 per cent more likely to be involved in a crash in every statistically significant area,” Voie said. “I’m also told women are often better with customers, and take better care of the equipment,” she added. “Now that we know women are capable and qualified, carriers are focusing on ways to attract more female drivers.” And that’s despite the odds often being stacked against women. Traditionally, everything from uniforms to showers at truck stops to the vehicles themselves have been designed for men, although that is slowly changing, Voie said. Add to that the safety issues of women travelling alone, which are now being addressed with initiatives such as better lighting and

security at truck stops, as well as through self-defence, self-esteem and anti-harassment initiatives. Fortunately, though, more women are making professional driving a career choice. “More and more women are entering the industry,” Voie said. According to the most recent WIT Index, “the official industry barometer to benchmark and measure each year the percentage of women who make up critical roles in transportation,” female commercial drivers now make up almost 14 per cent of all drivers in the United States. Additionally, “women are becoming more prevalent in the boardroom and Csuite,” Voie said “Women are more risk adverse,” she said. “For women in the boardroom, women make decisions differently than men and are less likely to make a quick decision because they explore all options. “Studies have shown that a more diverse leadership team results in higher net profits to the corporation.” Meanwhile, north of the border, Angela Splinter, CEO of Trucking HR Canada, agrees that recruiting and retaining more women will only benefit the industry overall when it comes to its long-term success. “When we look at truck driving, it’s the same as other blue collar type work and trades,” Splinter said from Ottawa, Ont., home of the Trucking HR headquarters. “Women continue to be under-represented and I think this will continue to be a challenge.” In fact, in total, only 3.7 per cent of truck drivers in Canada are female, according to Trucking HR Canada’s labour market information, a different percentage provided by American-based Women In Trucking. “We need to do better,” Splinter said. autoatlantic.com

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Truckers Corner

ELLEN VOIE

That being said, she said that average increases when it comes to positions within the industry outside of actually being behind the wheel of a truck. “We do see a lot of females in other roles within the industry,” she pointed out. “It’s still below other industries, but it’s higher; closer to 15 per cent, depending on the role, such as administration, and this includes management positions. “But still, when we look at the fact that women still represent half of our workforce, it is under-represented and lower than (the number of men in the industry).” That’s why organizations such as Women In Trucking south of the border, and both Trucking HR Canada and the Women’s Trucking Federation of Canada, and others, are working hard to attract more females into the industry, through various proactive initiatives. The federation, a Canadian non-profit organization which was “established to encourage the employment of women in the transportation industry,” for instance, offers a mentorship program through so-

cial media with more than 200 participating members, along with career fairs, speaking engagements, training seminars and more. Women in Trucking also offers a Driver Ambassador Program for “educating and amplifying how a career in transportation can be rewarding for women” and member benefits for business professionals and professional drivers. Trucking HR Canada, meanwhile, offers some incredible incentives through its Career ExpressWay Program for young women considering entering the industry, including the Youth Employment Skills Strategy and Student Work Placement Program. These initiatives have seen females comprising 25 per cent and 49 per cent of participants, respectively, representing a promising jump over the percentage of women currently working in the industry. Trucking HR also recently held its 8th annual Women With Drive Leadership Summit, with 250 people coming out to the event in Toronto this past June, the most ever to attend the event, with this year’s theme focused on Driving Diversity. “What we’re seeing is that there are a lot of women in the industry looking to engage and looking to get involved,” Splinter said, “and we take that as a positive sign.” “These kinds of professional development opportunities, opportunities to connect, to network, to seek out mentors, and coaches,” Splinter said, “they can certainly help us in keeping those women within the industry,” and encouraging other women to consider becoming a part of the workforce. “It was very rewarding to see so many new faces at this year’s event,” Splinter said, but added “I do think we do need to do more work, in terms of women’s representation in the C-suite and making sure that we have women on the association boards… so there’s always room

for improvement.” While improvement is always positive, those traditional genderbased challenges still exist and persist. “These aren’t occupations that traditionally attract women,” Splinter said. “I think (we need to raise more) awareness amongst the general public of the range of occupations that are offered in the industry. “When people think of trucking and logistics, they think of driving or working in the warehouse,” she explained. “While 46 per cent of our workforce are drivers, that means 54 per cent of our workforce are not drivers, so as one of the largest employers in the country, there are a whole range of economic opportunities, and we want to do a better job of connecting women to those economic opportunities.” Trucking HR Canada’s Career ExpressWay program helps do just that. Women In Trucking in the U.S. holds a similar annual event, the Accelerate! Conference and Expo, as an effort to attract a more gender diverse workforce, in the US. “Ask a lot of questions,” Voie said. “Be sure you know what you are looking for before you commit to a company.” “Connect with different organizations and network,” Splinter added. “Talk to other women who are currently working in the industry.” The reality is, the trucking industry offers stable, sustainable employment, regardless of gender. “Our industry, we’re not going anywhere,” Splinter said. “Even through the pandemic, we kept working.”

THE BOTTOM LINE? “Don’t overlook us,” Splinter said, especially since as an essential service, you won’t only be securing a sustainable profession for yourself, but you’ll also be making a positive difference in the millions of people that rely on the trucking industry each and every day.






In The Garage

‘A VERY REWARDING CAREER’: YOUNG HALIFAX APPRENTICE ENCOURAGES OTHER WOMEN TO GIVE AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR BUSINESS A TRY BY KRISTEN LIPSCOMBE ALEY GELDART OF C O L D STREAM, N.S., WAS JUST A TODDLER WHEN SHE STARTED TINKERING WITH TOOLS ALONGSIDE HER TWO BROTHERS UNDER THE SUPERVISION OF THEIR FATHER, ELDON GELDART, INSIDE THE FAMILY’S HOBBY GARAGE.

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Now 23 years old, Geldart’s passion for taking things apart and putting them back together again has translated into a successful apprenticeship at the All EV Canada location on Kempt Road in Halifax, where she’s been working as an apprentice and learning the ins and outs of electric vehicles for the past few months. “Me and my siblings were in the garage as soon as we were able to walk,” Geldart recalled of what inspired her to enrol in the Automotive Service and Repair program at Nova Scotia Community College, where she graduated from in June 2021. “There’s pictures of us wearing diapers, sitting on the hoods of cars. If there was anything (our father) had just lying around, sitting around, he’d give us ratchets and wrenches and let us go to town taking it apart and doing what he wanted.” Before getting into the automotive business, and after graduating from Cobequid Educational Centre in Truro, Geldart spent about a year working as a pre-board screening officer with Transportation Security Administration at Halifax Stanfield International Airport. But the global pandemic quickly changed her career plans as the airport substantially cut back on its staff in order to mitigate the COVID-19 impacts. “When I was younger, I had spent a lot of my time in my father’s hobby garage with him, and as I got older, I didn’t do it as much, until I got a couple of my own cars, and then I realized how much that I missed doing that stuff,” Geldart said of

what inspired her to take mechanical matters into her own hands. “And I didn’t want to have to rely on my father to be able to repair my cars anymore,” she added. “I wanted to be able to do it myself… and I’ve always had an interest in vehicles, so it was a match for me.” So Geldart recalibrated her career plans and decided to pursue her true passion by first joining the NSCC program and then the workforce, landing her first job in the automotive business at Bench Automotive on Waverley Road in Dartmouth, where she spent a year learning how to service high-end vehicles. Ultimately she ended up following her mentor, service manager Bill Hart, from Bench Automotive to All EV, where she’s enjoying learning about the intricacies of electric vehicles and how they differ from typical gas-fuelled vehicles. “I just helped and did a battery swap in a Tesla this week and it was really cool

to be able to do that,” Geldart said. “It’s very interesting,” she added. “I didn’t think that there would be that much more to it, but it’s cool to see the difference.” For instance, she said, “the fact that with electric, there’s no hesitation to the power you have; once you put your foot on the pedal, you’re gone.” “It’s very mind-opening,” she added. “It’s a lot to take in but it’s an adventure that will open up my career even further.” Geldart met mentor Hart through her common-law partner, Cody McLennan, a metal fabricator, who has always had her back as she has followed her dreams. She also credits her mother, Michelle Geldart, for encouraging her throughout high school to consider going into a trade and supporting her throughout her schooling. She’s grateful to have so many people cheering her on as she pursues what she loves most. “I like working with my hands. I like being able to take things apart,” Geldart said. “You know the basics of how it works, but when you take it apart and you have it in your own hands, you’re able to really understand and see how it works.” So what’s next for young All EV apprentice Geldart? Her next goal is to “pursue and get my red seal,” she said, adding she and boyfriend McLennan would love to buy their own property and perhaps start up their own little side shop for fun projects. “My boyfriend and I have a Miata, and I’ve had a couple of other cars, and just being able to fix it and do different stuff and make it your own personal project; it’s pretty cool to see what you can do with different vehicles.” As for being one of few women in a highly male-dominated industry – Geldart was the only female in the shop at Bench Automotive and the same is currently true at the All EV location in Halifax – the strong young apprentice isn’t discouraged herself and hopes to encourage other girls and women to consider getting into the business. “I’d say that it’s something you really want to try, you can do it,” Geldart said. “If you really put your mind to it, it’s a very rewarding career.” autoatlantic.com

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Talk of the town

SHRINERS KEEP ON KEEPING ON SHRINERS ARE NEVER FAR FROM A GOOD CAUSE, EVEN AT NOVA SCOTIAS’ SCOTIA SPEEDWORLD OUTSIDE HALIFAX By Sean Maddox

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N THE PHONE WITH MIKE SCHMID, HE WAS QUICK TO ESTABLISH THE FRATERNAL FOUNDATION OF THE SHRINERS. You must be a Freemason, often just called the Masons. In its present form, the Masons have been around for 305 years; much older in many other capacities dating back to the 13th century. Recognized by their red fez and long tassels. For many, the sight evokes memories of parades when the cars and bikes arrived. Always circling down the route and with a few characters in tow. Usually a clown or two. As the public face of the Masons, the Shriners are well know for their ability to raise awareness, resources and money for children. Shriner hospitals and health clinics can be found in almost every corner of the world. It is said judge an organization on their results, the Shriner’s have a lot to show, the Shriners achieve results. No family can visit the Isaac Walton Killam (IWK) Hospital for women and children

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in Halifax without becoming aware of the Shriners generous contributions and efforts to help children smile. For over 27 years there has been a Shriner presence at the Scotia Speedworld in Halifax, N.S.. The speedway stands at the entry to Halifax for most visitors to the province coming by car or plane. You can’t miss it. It stands as it did when it opened the gates to racers and fans in 1987. In 1997 Mike, some friends and other Shriners started the Shriner Street Stock Classic; now known as the Shriners Classic Sportsman 50. It was a natural evolution from years on the track and racing for these Shriners. The name is not the only thing that has changed over the years. New name, rules and feel. However, ask anyone around the track about the big races and it will include the Shriner Classic. Names on the prestigious trophy including Gordie Ryan, James Graves, Russell Smith Jr, and the late Terry Roma to name a few, have all won the race at least once. There is even a dash of intrigue at the track and among Shriners. What happened to the original trophy, the one holding the glass ball? The original trophy long gone, and yes, new rules to protect the new trophy but the legends live on. Mike started listing off the Shriner race winners from decades ago up to now. All I could

do was listen to his story and hear his passion. The same passion I felt the first night at the Speedworld this year when my 50/50 selling Shriner approached and asked, “What type of truck?” I am not sure he was happy with my choice. What could I say? My old 1990 Toyota Hilux twin cab took me to many corners of Africa those years I lived and worked there. This relationship, no, this partnership, has grown over the decades. For the last 25 years, the Shriners have shown up night after night to run the 50/50. That is correct, race after race for 25 years. Their efforts last season raised over $13,000. Scotia Speedworld General Manager Ken Cunning spoke so passionately about the Shriners. He said on race weeks there is a huge list of stuff to take care of, but the 50/50 is not on the list. “The Shriners run it all… I don’t have to think about it.” The Shriners do age. I know, many say they are as young as ever. To reinforce the ranks the model continues to be sustainable; the Freemasons attract new members every year. A great organization to recruit new Shriners. Some after years of service and training can even be clowns in parades. The partnership is based on many relationships built on trust and accountability. A web of relationships as found in many successful organizations and partnerships in Atlantic Canada and around the world. As Ken noted: “The relationships with the Shriners make the partnership work.” Not to mention history, laws, money, fun, and above all else, the cause. The Speedworld’s share of the 50/50 is donated to the IWK’s Remedial Seating Program. Next time you buy a 50/50 from a Shriner volunteer, take a moment to thank them for all they do to make our communities a better place to call home.



East Coast Road Report

NEWS OF THE WEIRD BITS AND BYTES OF THE BIZARRE, STRANGE AND DOWNRIGHT WEIRD GATHERED FROM AROUND THE WEB . . . SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO. YER WELCOME.

GRIN AND BEAR IT? ESPITE ALL THE ADVANCES IN SECURITY TECHNOLOGY FOR CARS, CAR THEFT IS A PERSISTENT PROBLEM.

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In 2020, over 800,000 vehicles were stolen in the United States — and millions more around the world. Earlier this year, in England, there was a bizarre auto theft incident. The police arrested a car thief after they found him hiding in a giant teddy bear. Car thief and teddy bear | Bastian Pudill and Nathan Dumlao via Unsplash On May 21, Joshua Dobson, an 18-year-old man from Rochdale, a town in Greater Manchester, England, did his own version of Grand Theft Auto. He stole a Mitsubishi ASX crossover SUV. However, it wasn’t the car theft that put Dobson on the radar of police. On the same day that he stole the Mitsubishi ASX, Dobson didn’t pay for gas after fueling up the crossover SUV. After being alerted to this, the police searched for Dobson in an attempt to question him about failing to pay for fuel. Teddy bear hiding spot for car thief | Greater Manchester Police As the Greater Manchester Police searched for him, Dobson headed inside an unknown address. Upon seeing a giant teddy bear, he cut open a hole and managed to squeeze himself into the plush doll. However, his teddy bear escape didn’t work out as he hoped, as reported by Mirror. While the police searched through the address, they heard the teddy bear 16

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“breathing.” After discovering the car thief, they arrested him. In a recent Facebook post, the Greater Manchester Police detailed the incident — with a dose of some “teddy bear” humor: “A wanted car thief who tried using a teddy bear to hide from our neighborhood cops out looking for him last month has been put behind bars for nine months.” “Joshua Dobson (18), from the Spotland area of the town, was sought by us after stealing a car in May and not paying for fuel that same day.” “When we went to arrest him, our officers noticed a large bear breathing in the address before finding Dobson hidden inside!” “He’s now stuffed behind bars after being sentenced last week for theft of a motor vehicle, driving while disqualified, and making off from a petrol station without payment.” “Hopefully, he has a bearable time inside…” Car Thief Arrested After Found Hiding in Giant Teddy Bear (motorbiscuit.com)

TESLA OPENS REAL SWIMMING POOL AT SUPERCHARGER STATION

Tesla has certainly made for some weird news over the years, and CEO Elon Musk has been known to have some crazy ideas. However, when we first saw posts on social media suggesting that the automaker actually opened a makeshift pool at a Tesla Supercharger station, we weren’t

so sure we should believe it. You’ve probably seen posts about Tesla making a smartphone or joining forces with Apple, along with other fabricated stories that aren’t true. When it comes to Tesla news, you have to look very carefully at the source, their potential intentions, and the message itself. It’s important to do some digging and make sure the Tesla “news” you’re reading about is actually true. With that said, Tesla really did put up a swimming pool at a Supercharger station in Germany. CEO Elon Musk has talked about adding an amusement park at Tesla’s factories, turning Supercharger stations into old-fashioned drive-in theaters, and more. However, a makeshift pool at a Supercharger station is a bit wild, since very few people are going to come prepared with a bathing suit and be willing to get drenched before getting back on the road. As you can see from the video above, the pool actually does exist at Tesla’s Supercharger station in Hilden, Germany, which is the largest in the country, with 40 stalls, solar panels, and restaurants. As Tesla comes up with new ideas for features and amenities for future Superchargers, it seems it may be testing out the swimming pool concept during this hot summer. Or, perhaps the company and its employees simply set out to have a little fun. Tesla Opens Real Swimming Pool At Supercharger Station (insideevs.com)

NANANANANANA BATMAN! Riddle me this, Batman: When a custom car shop in Indiana does not deliver a Batmobile replica to a customer, why would a California sheriff send four deputies cross-country to arrest the shop’s owner, jail him and freeze his assets?



East Coast Road Report

The answer: The guy who ordered the Batmobile is apparently a friend of the sheriff. The district attorney and board of supervisors in San Mateo County had to solve this riddle recently when it was revealed that Sheriff Carlos Bolanos had sent deputies to a shop called Fiberglass Freaks in Logansport, Indiana, which is licensed by DC Comics to build replicas of the George Barris Batmobile from the 1960s Adam West TV show. As reported by San Francisco’s KGO ABC7 and spotted by The Drive, San Mateo real-estate agent Sam Anagnostou ordered himself up one of these $210,000 crime-fighting machines. (Considering the sweet 23-window VW bus Anagnostou is using in a real estate promotional video, he has an eye for the finer things.) But he managed to forfeit his place in the line for Batmobiles. And yes, there’s a line for Batmobiles. Mark Racop, who owns Fiberglass Freaks, said he has nine Batmobiles in production. He said Anagnostou was actually first in line, but he missed a $20,000 payment. “And he disappeared on me for over eight months, almost nine months,” Racop said. When Anagnostou didn’t

get his Batmobile on time, the account goes, Bolanos sent four deputies to Indiana, more than 2,000 miles beyond his Gotham City on the Bay. They were traveling on the taxpayers’ dime — “four round-trip plane tickets, three nights of hotels, meals, rental cars, and a lot of overtime,” ABC7 said. There, they arrested Racop on California felony charges and briefly threw him in an Indiana jail. Did Anagnostou flake? Did Racop fail to deliver? Who knows, who cares. The real question is why would the sheriff get involved, and that’s the riddle that ABC7 solved. The station says Anagnostou first filed a lawsuit, which was dismissed, then tried to interest police in Indiana to no avail, which is no surprise as it sounds like a civil matter. That’s when Anagnostou turned his Bat-Signal in the direction of Bolanos, whom the station says was his friend. Or as the lede on the ABC7 story says, “Holy political favors, Batman!” The sheriff obtained search warrants in San Mateo, yet the district attorney says he didn’t realize the raid would happen in Indiana and said he didn’t approve it. Now it sounds like the D.A. is going to

dismiss the charges. So Anagnostou is without wheels. And Racop could be off the hook, just as Batman and Robin wriggled off so many hooks over so many pots of boiling oil. And where does that leave Sheriff Bolanos? Out of a job. Even before all this, he had lost a June primary election to a captain in his department. He was a lame duck when the Batmobile quest happened in July. Sheriff sends deputies on Batmobile arrest errand for a friend | Autoblog

ABOUT YOUR AVERAGE SIZED TORONTO CONDO…. Cars are complicated. A seemingly simple problem can stump even experienced mechanics, and the costs can add up quickly for the vehicle owner. Me-


chanical issues, damage from collisions and accidents, and replacing worn items like tires are all common and expected parts of owning cars. What isn’t expected, however, are rodents, which can cause big-dollar problems under the hood of your vehicle (as they once did with Autoblog’s long-term Hyundai Palisade). The New York Times reported that a surprising number of people in the city are experiencing major car problems from rats and other rodents. The animals nest under their hoods and chew wires, leave debris and other items, and make a mess. The number of reported rat sightings skyrocketed between 2020 and 2021. Michael H. Parsons, a Fordham University research scholar, told the New York Times that restaurants shutting down and the subsequent proliferation of outdoor dining during the COVID-19 pandemic played a significant role in the shift. Without dumpsters full of fresh restaurant food, rats have been forced to move to other food sources, and outdoor dining has provided streetside meals to the hungry scavengers. Couple that seismic shift in rats’ everyday lives with the fact that many cars have

organic wiring insulation that smells like food, and you start to see why there’s a problem. There is debate over whether organic materials like soy-based wiring insulation attract rodents. Still, the reality is that many people find their wires chewed in addition to evidence of rodents living in the engine bay. Parsons believes improvements in “urban hygiene,” as he calls it, will help curb the rodent problem. Food scraps, trash, and other waste present a smorgasbord of aromas and tastes for animals of all types, so for a city the size of New York, the solution will require significant effort and investment. While there are certainly more rats living in New York City than in smaller towns, like, say, Chillicothe, Ohio, people in other areas are just as susceptible to chewing and damage from rodents. Many vehicles from Toyota, Kia, Hyundai, and even luxury brands like Audi and BMW have soybased wiring. Those that don’t are still at risk because wild animals of all types are attracted to warm, safe spaces, which is precisely what an engine compartment feels like after living on the street.

If you’re experiencing an infestation, you don’t have to burn down your car, despite the temptation. One of the best ways to prevent chewing is to spray the wires with a bitter apple or another deterrent. The smell and awful taste should keep teeth off your wires, but you’ll need to reapply periodically to retain effectiveness. You could also try an under-hood rodent repeller, like this device that uses LED lights and ultrasound to deter pests. You can also place traps or park your car in a garage away from areas where rodents roam. Rats are making homes under car hoods in increasing numbers | Autoblog.


Around the Atlantic

‘ALL ABOUT CUSTOMER SATISFACTION’

NEW NAPA AUTOPRO LOCATION OFFERS HIGH-QUALITY SERVICE TO CLARENVILLE, NL AND SURROUNDING AREAS

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By Kristen Lipscombe

OR THE BRAND NEW NAPA AUTOPRO SHOP IN CLARENVILLE, NFLD., “CUSTOMERS ARE THE NO. 1 PRIORITY.”

“Taking care of our customers and whatever automotive repairs they may need, that’s what’s most important to us,” operations manager Brian Kinsella told Auto and Trucking Atlantic. “We’re all about customer satisfaction.” The new NAPA franchise located at 7 Coish Place, in the heart of the closeknit Newfoundland community, opened its doors to the public just this past May. Kinsella, service manager Greg Butt and the rest of the new NAPA team are in the midst of renovating and upgrading a former garage into a state-of-the-art AUTOPRO shop in order to provide “the best auto repair service in Newfoundland and Labrador,” according to NAPA’s website. “Our auto repair shop in Clarenville provides you with a complete offering of maintenance and repair services, such as oil change, wheel alignment and brake maintenance.” Joining the NAPA family of garages was an easy decision, Kinsella said. The strong and reliable NAPA reputation speaks for itself. “We decided to make it a NAPA location because of brand recognition,” he said. “NAPA has been in the game for so long. They’ve got a huge market presence.” Kinsella added that NAPA also has “phenomenal warranties on their parts, nationwide parts, and labour warranty, so we signed up basically because of all the different programs they have to offer.” Currently, there are three service technicians working at NAPA AUTOPRO Clarenville, and so far, business is great, Kinsella said. Both Kinsella and Butt, both Newfoundland natives themselves, have been in the automotive business for about 20 years each, for four decades of combined experience. “With his customer service skills and my knowledge of the business, we make a great team,” Kinsella said. And both are proud to serve the Clarenville community and surrounding areas. Just as the Clarenville AUTOPRO website says, “our passionate approach to building lasting relationships with our customers and our drive to continually upgrade our technical knowledge show that we are with you for the long haul.” 20

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Our Environment

QC ZERO EMISSION SALES MANDATE GLOBAL AUTOMAKERS RESPONSE TO ANNOUNCED CHANGES TO QUEBEC’S ZERO EMISSION VEHICLE SALES MANDATE

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HE QUEBEC GOVERNMENT RECENTLY CLOSED ITS CONSULTATION ON CHANGES TO QUEBEC’S ZERO-EMISSION VEHICLE SALES STANDARD (ZEV STANDARD): “THE ESSENCE OF THESE PROPOSED CHANGES TO QUEBEC’S MANDATED ZERO-EMISSION VEHICLE TARGETS IS TO DRASTICALLY INCREASE THE STRINGENCY OF THE REGULATION LESS THAN 6 MONTHS AFTER THEIR PREVIOUS CONSULTATION,” SAID DAVID ADAMS, PRESIDENT & CEO OF THE GAC. “Our industry requires some consistency regarding the targets regulators require manufacturers to meet that are first, grounded in science and secondly, supported by ongoing commitments to both consumer incentives and charging infrastructure build-out,” added Adams “All of our members are fully supportive of the drive to decarbonize their fleets, however governments in Quebec and across Canada need to be aware of the unintended consequences for consumers of setting targets that are both too aggressive and too costly for manufacturers to comply with.

These consequences can include increased vehicle prices and decreased model selection, both of which can result in older vehicles staying on the road longer – which does nothing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” “Moreover, the Quebec government cannot simply pretend that record high inflation and Bank of Canada interest rates that will likely be at 3.25% by the end of the year have no impact on consumers’ ability to afford to transition to electric vehicles – which remain more expensive. Meanwhile, the government is cutting its incentive amount available to assist consumers. This is not a recipe for success,” noted Adams. The GAC and its member companies remain committed to working with the Québec government to decarbonize road-transportation and continue to provide our input into the regulatory development process. autoatlantic.com

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ELECTRIC AVENUE

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By Jérémie Bernardin

V CLINICS ARE JUST THE LATEST INNOVATION FROM ATLANTIC EV PIONEERS. CREATING A BUZZ WITH THE LOCAL ELECTRIC VEHICLE ENTHUSIASTS FOR A GOOD CAUSE.

Peeking under the hood and under the battery case of an electric vehicle is quite a unique opportunity that many electric vehicle (EV) enthusiasts in Halifax jumped at this past June. All EV Halifax held an in-depth Tesla Model 3 clinic open to the public with half of the money raised going to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and half to the Electric Vehicle Association of Atlantic Canada. With multiple Teslas up on hoists with their protective covers taken off, participants had the chance to see firsthand how unique these vehicles are. A cutaway motor was on display along with individual battery cells (of which 4416 cells arranged in 96 groups of 46 make up one battery pack), battery cooling components, autonomous driving components, heat pump, and the charging equipment “brains” that control the battery. Participants had the chance to ask master technician and EV expert David Giles any questions they had. With no shortage of those, Giles covered a tremendous amount of ground including Vehicle 2 Grid, their in-house EV-specific rustproofing, certified battery health reports, charging systems, battery innovations, ser24

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vice regimen on components, and more. This clinic would be considered one of the most in-depth and advanced Tesla clinics open to the public in North America. Best of all, Dave announced his newest project, a completely new and unique cut-away Tesla IDEV (Interactive Demonstration Electric Vehicle) that will be on display at their soon-to-open All EV location in Moncton. This is but one example of how Steele Auto Group and All EV are leaning in to accelerate electric vehicle awareness, interest, and adoption in Atlantic Canada. To join upcoming EV educational sessions visit www.allev.ca/ev-education. Jérémie Bernardin is the Business Development Manager with All EV by Steele



Future Technologies

HEADING

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East Coast Road Report

THE ATLANTIC ROAD REPORT BITS AND PIECES OF NEWS COLLECTED FROM AROUND THE ATLANTIC NEWFOUNDLAND

Forest Access Roads in the Paradise Lake and Bay d’Espoir Highway Areas Being Opened The Department of Fisheries, Forestry and Agriculture has made arrangements to open a number of forest access roads in the area of Paradise Lake and Bay d’Espoir Highway (Route 360), so that residents may access their cabins and campers. The Bay d’Espoir Highway (Route 360) continues to remain open to traffic. However, not all forest access roads or cabins are accessible. If you are planning to use forest access roads in the vicinity of these fires, please examine the below map to determine whether your cabin or camper is accessible. The map shows closed forest access roads in yellow. The two fires shown in white crosshatch are active forest fire areas and are not accessible. The ‘STOP’ symbols represent the points at

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which the public may not go any further as they are considered unsafe. If residents decide to use the newly opened forest access roads, they are asked to proceed cautiously and safely and to be aware that crews continue to address the forest fires in the broader region.

NOVA SCOTIA

Mira Gut Bridge Officially Opens Residents and visitors in the Mira River area no longer have to take a 20-kilometre detour thanks to the completion of the Mira Gut Bridge, a major link in Cape Breton’s road network, which officially opened today, August 5. “The Mira River area, home to one of Cape Breton Island’s busiest beaches and a scenic ocean drive, now has a safer, uninterrupted transportation link,” said Brian Comer, Minister responsible for the Office of Addictions and Mental Health and MLA for Cape Breton East, on behalf

of Kim Masland, Minister of Public Works. “The addition of the sidewalk along the bridge will encourage active transportation, allowing cyclists, walkers, runners and others to safely cross the Mira River.” The new Mira Gut Bridge is an 80-metre truss bridge with a 6.5-metre vertical clearance to accommodate boats. It cost $6.525 million. The reopening of the Mira Gut Bridge represents the reconnection of our community and the Marconi Trail. The bridge, while remarkable in its design, is truly beautiful because it also represents the efforts of a community advocating and working together to get to this day. There is a groundswell of joy and gratitude that goes along with every ride over this bridge many of us feel today and will for many to come.Amanda McDougall, Mayor, Cape Breton Regional Municipality Quick Facts: the original Mira Gut Bridge was a



East Coast Road Report

swing bridge which opened to accommodate large boats, disrupting road traffic in November 2017, the Mira Gut Bridge was closed because the swing bridge no longer worked properly about 1,000 vehicles crossed the bridge daily

PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND

Driver’s license process made easier for Ukrainians The Province of Prince Edward Island is simplifying the driver’s license exchange process for eligible individuals from Ukraine. Beginning Monday, August 15, individuals who are exchanging full stage Ukrainian Category B (including BE) passenger vehicle licenses for PEI’s Class 5 license will be able to do so without a written exam or road testing. Commercial class licenses or motorcycle licenses are not eligible for exchange. Applicants must provide a valid driver’s license from the reciprocal country and/or a translated copy in French or English of their driver’s license, as well as two documents that show their current address in Prince Edward Island. “As a province, we are doing what we can to create a welcoming environment for Ukrainians who are fleeing the Russian invasion of their country. It is important that we make the transition for Ukrainian newcomers as smooth

as possible as they settle into their new home.” - Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Cory Deagle. This initiative was made possible by the due diligence processes completed by member jurisdictions of the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, consisting of in-depth analysis of Ukraine’s driver education requirements, testing standards, verification of driver license documents which included reviewing work recently completed between Ukraine and the United Kingdom for this purpose. Individuals from the Ukraine who have recently started the drivers licensing and testing process can contact the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Highway Safety Division at 902-368-5223 to discuss the new exchange options. All new residents and visitors to PEI can drive on their existing license for up to four months before they require a PEI license. Once the exchange process has started the four-month time limit is extended until the process is completed. Depending on which country they are from, new Island residents may be able to simply exchange their foreign license for a driving license in Canada without the need to take road tests or knowledge tests.

Come join our team! Auto & Trucking Atlantic is seeking a an energetic ad sales professional with prior sales, or print or digital experience. You will have a chance to grow with our expanding publishing company. The position involves working with current clients as well as sourcing and building new sales leads.

We offer an independent, flexible work environment with lots of opportunity for growth and a competitive commission structure. We’ll even provide the business cards. Visit our website at: autoatlantic. com and forward your resume to rob@autoatlantic.com.

608 - 56 Jacob Lane Bedford, NS B3M 0H5 Tel: 1.902.452.0345 Email: rob@autoatlantic.com autoatlantic.com 30

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Future Technologies

MYTHBUSTING: ON EVS AS LUXURY VEHICLES AND OTHER FLIGHTS OF FANCY AN INSURANCE PROFESSIONAL ASKS US TO STAND UP AND RECONSIDER THE MANY REASONS WHY WE SHOULD BE CONSIDERING AN EV FOR OUR NEXT AUTOMOBILE PURCHASE.

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By Carter Hammett

ITH THE RAPID RISE OF GASOLINE COSTS DURING THE PAST YEAR, A PARALLEL INCREASED INTEREST IN ELECTRIC VEHICLES (EVS) HAS ALSO GOT PEOPLE LOOKING AT ALTERNATIVES TO TRADITIONAL GAS GUZZLERS.

EVs account for 8.2 per cent of all new Canadian vehicle registrations according to S&P Global. And yet, and yet. While EV interest continues to trend upwards, many consumers still have an outdated understanding of the current EV market says Tanisha Kishan, RATESDOTCA expert and chartered insurance professional. “The EV industry is moving faster than consumer education is.” As rising gas prices squeeze drivers’ budgets, it’s natural that people would become interested in vehicles that provide more affordable fuel options like BEVs and PHEVs says Kishan. And, contrary to popular belief, not all EVs are Teslas. “Tesla may have carved the initial path for EVs in Canada, but many other carmakers are getting into the game. Ford, Kia, Hyundai, Chevrolet, Audi and Nissan are just a few of the carmakers now putting out EVs. “The Nissan Leaf, Chevrolet Bolt, Hyundai Ioniq, Toyota Prius Prime, Honda Clarity and Mistubishi Outlander are just a few examples of BEVs and PHEVs that are available on the market now,” says

Kishan. That’s just one of several myths concerning EV, she says. There’s many more, including: Rebates are available for all EV purchases: The federal government does offer rebates for EV purchases, but there are limitations. The vehicles must be new (not previously owned) and must have a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $55,000 or less for passenger vehicles and $60,000 or less for station wagons, pickup trucks, SUVs, minivans, vans or special purpose vehicles. “EV rebates will vary by province, vehicle and for insurance, by insurer. There isn’t a unified EV rebate policy that will apply to all BEVs and PHEVs,” Kishan says. You can find more information on federal ZEV eligibility by make and model here: https://tc.canada.ca/en/road-transportation/innovative-technologies/zeroemission-vehicles/light-duty-zero-emission-vehicles/eligible-vehicles And you can find specific info on provincial incentives here: https://www.caa. ca/sustainability/electric-vehicles/government-incentives/ EVs are luxury vehicles: Until relatively recently, the EVs available on the market were luxury vehicles and were priced accordingly, making them prohibitively expensive to many. However auto manufacturers are now releasing more affordable EV models.. “The Chevrolet Bolt (BEV) is available for approximately $38K, the Hyundai Ioniq (BEV) for approximately $44K, Toyota Prius (PHEV) for approximately $29K

Drivers can compare quotes for EV insurance in different provinces and postal codes using our online insurance quoter: https://rates.ca/insurance-quotes/ auto?cta=RgkVWM You can check out some EV insurance premium prices and estimated annual fuel 32

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and the Mitsubishi Outlander (PHEV) for approximately $32K are all examples of BEVs and PHEVs that are available for significantly less than a Tesla Model 3 that comes in at approximately $61K.“ EV auto insurance is more expensive than for gas-powered vehicles: A major factor in calculating auto insurance premiums is the price of replacing the vehicle and vehicle parts. Historically, EVs have had more expensive parts and sometimes only specialized mechanics can work on them, which drives up the cost of insurance. As the price of EV parts go down and the number of mechanics trained to work on EVs increases, insurance premiums could decline. Insurance for some EVs are already comparable to gas-powered cars of equivalent value. According to data from RATESDOTCA’s online quoter, in Toronto the average insurance premium for a Nissan Leaf is $2,561, compared to the Chevrolet Cruz at $2,598 and the Honda Civic at $2,722.* EVs can only travel short distances: When EVs were initially introduced, the short drive times between charges were a major deterrent for consumers worried about travelling long distances. Now many EVs can drive up to 640km on a single charge. “As EVs and EV infrastructure become more available, we will likely see an increase in EV use across the country. Contrary to popular belief, EV insurance rates are comparable to those of gas-powered vehicles. It’s in a driver’s best interests to shop around for EV insurance if they purchase a ZEV.”

costs here: https://rates.ca/resources/howmuch-car-insurance-electric-vehicle-ontario-and-alberta *Prices based on a 30-year-old female driver with 10 years of driving experience and a claims-free and conviction-free insurance history.



The Mindful Trucker

THE WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY A SEASONED VET LOOKS BACK ON A CAREER DECISION WITH NO REGRETS By Dana Smith

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Every time my family would go on a road trip, I would stare out the car window looking at all the big trucks passing by. Of course in school I used to stare out the window a lot as well, not really interested in whatever was going on in class. My teacher would say,

that was how you got their attention. I came from a family who were not involved in trucking at all. As I grew up, I became more and more fascinated with those big rigs, and wondered how I would ever come to drive them. By the time I was in my late teens, I knew that when I became legal age I was going to drive a big rig. It’s one of those things you can feel inside yourself. That drive, and passion that consumes you for whatever it is that you love doing. At the age of 20 I made the decision, with the help of my parents to attend a truck training school, and pursue my dream. Although back then I was told (not by my parents), that if I didn’t go to university, I wouldn’t be successful in life. What a thing to say to a young person,

“You will never make a living staring out the window, so pay attention”. Made me laugh! Some of those trucks were really nice. Of course back then, I wasn’t sure what kind they were. I always wondered where they were going, and who was driving them. What was in the trailer? They were larger than life to me, and I had so many questions. As a kid, I didn’t know where to go to find those answers. Every time they would pass by, I would give them the fist pump, hoping for a second they would blow the air horn. They usually did, if they saw us. Not sure how I figured out how to do that. I may have seen another kid do it, and thought,

especially when that is the furthest thing from the truth. I learned very quickly that trucking was the way to go for me. Trades were highly underrated back then (and still are) and were basically frowned upon. It was all about the university education. The world we live in now requires many tradespeople, as there is now a shortage of them, or the ones that are working are so busy, they can’t keep up with demand. Trucking is no different. Why is it that we know what the issue is, but we wait until we are knee deep in it before we react? Wouldn’t it be more productive to be proactive, and collaborate instead, from the beginning? It takes

ACK IN THE DAY, I R E M E M BE R WHEN I FIRST STARTED TO LIKE BIG TRUCKS. I WAS AROUND EIGHT YEARS OLD.

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a lot less energy to be proactive than to be reactive. It just creates more time and space for everyone. After training, I jumped into trucking with both feet, and away I went. Doing local work at first, then team driving all over North America. Hauling everything that would fit in, or on a truck. I loved it, and the lifestyle. Would I say it was easy? Never! There were lots of struggles throughout those years. Being away from home for extended periods, living out of the truck, not getting much exercise, and the feeling of loneliness and isolation at times. But at the end of the day, it was all a learning experience that brought me to where I am now. Fast forward 35 years later, after driving for years, owning my own trucks, and currently training people to drive, I still have that passion for the industry. The trucking industry has given me a purpose, value, a good living, and a lot of teachable moments along the way. A mentor once told me, and I quote, “If you’re not earning, you’re learning”. I often wonder what I would have done differently, if I had the chance to live my life over again, as I’m sure a lot of you do. To be honest, I would not change a thing. The trucking industry is a world of its own, and there are thousands of opportunities within it. The places you go, the things you see, and the people you meet, are all part of that journey. We all have that in us somewhere. It may not be in the trucking industry, but the passion is there for something. Whatever industry or career you choose, follow your passions. Don’t make money the primary reason for doing it, or do it because someone expects you too. Do it for the right reasons. Following your passions and using your gifts and strengths will lead you to a far better and bigger outcome, one of fulfillment and happiness, one of excitement and desire, to go out there and achieve whatever you choose. The money will follow: it always does. So when I refer back to my teacher years ago, I guess she was wrong, because you really can make a living staring out the window. It’s called Trucking! To read more of Dana’s articles, please visit: themindfultrucker.com



Around the Atlantic

FIX AUTO DRIVING CHANGE . . .

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OMEN ARE INCREASINGLY CHANGING THE PERCEPTION OF THE AFTERMARKET INDUSTRY AS A MALE-DOMINATED SECTOR. WE SHARE STORIES OF TWO INSPIRING WOMEN IN THE ATLANTIC REGION WHO ARE DEFYING CONVENTION.

For some time now, the conventional image of the automotive aftermarket industry has always been that of a menonly club. Not anymore, as an increasing number of women are leading, influencing, and thriving in this niche industry – working in important functions from the executive level to the counter pro to the shop owner. Fix Network, a leading international provider of aftermarket services, has been putting the spotlight on two female

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achievers in its global network for some time now, as part of its “Women at Fix Network” series. Two women from the Atlantic region were also profiled – Andrea Ghaney from Fix Auto St. John’s Avalon (Newfoundland) and Katherine Gordillo of Fix Auto Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island). A n d r e a Ghaney has been a familiar face in New found land’s thriving aftermarket industry for the past 25 years,

KATHERINE GORDILLO


competition. An important element of her daily routine is to develop strategies that maximise efficiencies of all departments and improve workflow at the shop. “My first impression of the automotive aftermarket business was that it would be a boy’s club,” laughs Katherine. “However, during my short journey here, I have met so many incredible women who are continuously setting the standards in the

industry every day. Their diversity and their different perspectives changed my perception and inspired me to learn every aspect of the business as possible.” Katherine believes one can achieve so much more if they can challenge themselves. “Each day, I ask myself – what can I do better today than I did yesterday – and then go about achieving that,” she says.

ANDREA GHANEY

inspiring many women keen to pursue a career in the collision repair business. At the wheel of Fix Auto St. John’s Avalon as its Collision Centre Manager, she interacts daily with the shop’s large customer base, while ensuring that her team of technicians and office staff are at the top of their game through regular training and certifications. Andrea is known to be a trailblazer, shattering perceptions about women in what historically has been a male-dominated field. “I believe the perception about women in the industry is changing and that there is a large number of women across the globe who actually do work on vehicles every day and enjoy it,” says Andrea. “Women are continuously making a difference at all levels of the business – whether in the workshop or adjusting claims or excelling in customer service.” Another achiever, Katherine Gordillo of Fix Auto Charlottetown, wears many hats – she lives and breathes collision repair, and when time permits, teaches Latin American dance styles to different generations of people. Born in Ecuador, she has been in the automotive aftermarket industry for a little over two years but is already making a tremendous impact. As Employee Processes Analyst at Fix Auto Charlottetown, Katherine looks at enhancing the customer experience, creating high standards in customer service, and differentiating her shop from the autoatlantic.com

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At The Car Wash

PET WASH PROFIT STRESS AND MESS-FREE BATH TIME

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By Meline Beach

ETS ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF CANADIAN HOUSEHOLDS. ACCORDING TO STATISTA. COM, THERE WERE 8.1 MILLION PET CATS AND 7.7 MILLION PET DOGS IN 2020. While cats tend to groom themselves naturally, dogs typically benefit from a monthly wash. With numbers like that, many of your customers are likely to be pet owners. As a convenience store or carwash owner and

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operator, do you anticipate the needs of your customers as pet owners? Do you sell kibble, collars, leashes, and grooming products? Do you offer an on-site pet washing station? Perry Flann of Campbellton, New Brunswick, is an accountant turned business owner with several companies in his portfolio, including convenience stores, Subway restaurants, gas stations, and carwashes – one of which includes a pet washing station called Puddles Pet Wash. He picked up a self-contained pet washing unit from a friend a few years ago and recently finished installing it in a built-in structure on the side of his carwash in the rural community of Northumberland County. The 15’x18’ structure shares a wall with the carwash and features a con-

crete pad, plumbing, three windows, ventilation, in-floor heating, and a door. Pet washing is not a seasonal activity and an indoor unit enables the station to operate throughout the year, regardless of weather and seasonal temperatures. In operation since June 2021, Flann says the value-added service is profitable, “though not in the millions, it has a 75 per cent profit margin.” The pet wash station shares the same drainage as the carwash and requires a weekly disinfectant. Besides paper towels, sanitizers, shampoo, conditioner and rinse aids, Flann says his pet wash is clean and low maintenance. In terms of marketing, he distributes flyers to local veterinarian clinics and does radio advertising, Facebook posts, and has a spinning sign at the


end of the road. Flann’s unit is not as sophisticated as other units in the market. His pet wash station is coin based and uses a manual dial to select the stage – shampoo, conditioner, flea and tick rinse, and dryer. The cost is strictly dependent on timing and how quickly you go through the stages. “You pick and choose the service based on the dial setting,” says Flann. “Five dollars gets you five minutes and it’s up to you if you want to spend that entire five minutes on shampoo. For most customers, it takes 10 minutes and $10 to get a great wash. Considering most groomers charge between $50 to $100, and have limited availability, our self-serve pet wash is a bargain.” K9000 and iClean Dog Wash are two internationally-recognized manufacturers of pet washing stations that are gaining market share in Canada. Both have similar and unique features that cater to customers’ needs when it comes to keeping their pets clean in a safe, fast, convenient, and cost-effective way.

note and Nayax Card options. The Nayax readers accept credit/debit/apple pay and the Monyx Wallet app, viewable online using the Nayax online system. Pre-paid loyalty cards are also available and allow business owners to sell as gift cards or bulk dog washes. In terms of ownership, K9000 units are sold, not franchised, however, Furever Clean Dog Wash offers the option to pur-

chase in full or lease to own, over five years with low monthly payments. Delivery from Vancouver, British Columbia, where the company is based, and installation costs are at the owner’s expense. Furever Clean Dog Wash provides phone support seven days a week and one-onone commissioning services to ensure proper installation and functionality as well as training on how to clean and

FUREVER CLEAN DOG WASH Built in Australia, the K9000 unit made its Canadian debut in 2017, with over 66 machines installed at a variety of convenience stores, gas stations, carwashes, laundromats, shopping malls, multi-residential condominiums, and pet businesses coast to coast. There are also thousands of K9000 machines sold internationally. According to Evelyn Rutherford, director of Furever Clean Dog Wash and Canadian distributor of the K9000, the pet wash is a valuable and complementary self-serve, standalone business that requires very little effort. “No staff are required on-site and customers simply make a payment at the machine and help themselves,” says Rutherford. “The door of the dog wash area can be fitted with an automatic lock so it opens and closes on a timer. As the dog wash machine has a three-part filtration system and a free disinfect cycle, the tub doesn’t require manual cleaning after every pet wash.” There are 4 K9000 models to choose from, each featuring a stainless-steel basin, built-in hypoallergenic shampoo products and disinfectant, three-part filtration system, programmable functions, payment devices, and dryers. Additional accessories include non-slip mats, pet towel/leash holders, and aprons – to name a few. Payment is available in many forms, including coins, cards, and tokens, as well as configured to offer free washes or combination payments, such as MEI Bank autoatlantic.com

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At The Car Wash

maintain the machine. To accommodate year-round use, Furever Clean Dog Wash also offers an insulated dog wash building in both single and twin sizes – ideal for carwash/convenience/gas stations that do not have space in their current business and are looking for a self-contained option to place on the property. “We often consult with business owners and advise on the best location for their pet washing unit as well as with electricians and plumbers on the best way

to install it,” says Rutherford. “Many of our business owners start with one machine and after a year or so purchase another.”

In terms of additional revenue streams, Rutherford suggests renting out an area of the pet wash room once or twice a week to a groomer who can provide additional services such as nail clipping to enhance the dog washing service, as well as provide Furever Clean’s pet-themed vending machines with pre-paid dog wash cards and dog treats.

ICLEAN DOG WASH With offices in Europe and the United States, iClean Dog Wash is growing steadily in Canada at a 60 per cent growth rate. Their customer base has expanded from pet stores, veterinary clinics, and laundromats to carwashes, gas stations, and convenience stores. iClean dog wash units are available in 14 models, each made from aircraft-grade stainless steel. Suitable for indoor and outdoor environments, each unit has a built-in water heater, triple filtration hair trap and features seven settings: shampoo, rinse water, conditioner, flea wash, low/high blow-dry low, and disinfectant. Each purchase of a unit comes with a five-litre container of biodegradable, low suds, tearless shampoo safe for all dogs, cats, and sewer systems, as well as crème rinse, flea and tick wash, and disinfectant, which lasts approximately three months (and over 100 pet washes). At the end of each use, a free 30-second spray of disinfectant eliminates any concerns of potential cross-contamination. To

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install, all you need is a cold-water line, a 110-volt outlet, and a floor or wall drain. The Futura and new Cyber Wash are the most popular models in Canada. “Each customer has a choice of model that suits their business best,” says Phillip Cooper, chief executive officer for iClean Dog Wash, North and South America. “Some retailers want all the bells and whistles, like the Futura Touch Pad Plus, which offers 30 different languages and 40 celebrity voices that well each step of the wash, while others choose solely on price.” Given the cost of a pet wash, return on investment is always important. Consider location and competition before committing – are you located within a neighbourhood that attracts foot traffic or is your customer base mostly commuters and commercial drivers? Are there neighbouring pet washes in the area that would detract from your business? “Many of our customers pay off a unit in approximately one and a half years and have an equal amount of revenue,” says Cooper, who maintains that iClean units are trouble-free and last up to 30 years. “The average customer with an average location sees approximately eight to 10 washes a day. This, of course, is based on location and promotion.” The most successful locations are in high-traffic areas and use social media to help drive traffic. A simple, inexpensive Facebook ad, targeted by area, can increase your customer count, not only for the pet wash but for your primary business as well as many retailers benefit from additional sales per visit. A pet wash station is a stress and messfree way to generate additional revenue. Meline Beach is a Toronto-based communications practitioner and frequent contributor to Convenience & Carwash Canada, where this article was originally published. In addition to freelance writing, Meline provides communications and public relations support to businesses across Canada. She can be reached at www.mlbcomms.ca.



Carter’s Corner

RITE OF PASSAGE ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT STEPS NEW IMMIGRANTS CAN TAKE

AFTER SETTLING IN CANADA IS LEARNING HOW TO DRIVE. HEREWITH, A PRIMER ON THE FIRST STEPS…

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By Carter Hammett

HEN CALVIN ADJIJIL FIRST LANDED IN CANADA FROM HIS NATIVE PHILIPPINES, HE REALIZED, QUICKLY AND NERVOUSLY, HE’D HAVE TO LEARN SOMETHING MANY OF US TAKE FOR GRANTED: DRIVING. Adjijil, 29, a civil engineer by training, envisioned a bumper-to-bumper experience similar to the driving experience in his home town of Cabanatuan. “When I started my first job here I was doing field work so I went to different sites everyday using public transit,” he says. It was a challenge for me. That’s when I saw the need to learn to drive and own a car eventually.” He quickly realized however, that driving followed a set of rules that laid out a template for his development of these newfound skills. “Driving itself is a day-by-day learning process while the rules are the principles

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of driving,” he says. “You cannot drive without learning or at least being aware of the rules first.” And it’s those rules that have challenged many a new Canadian who arrive from their home countries with a firm sense of how things should be only to quickly realize that often the rules are not what they envisioned. Fortunately, Toronto is blessed with a number of driving schools that offer courses specifically for new Canadians. One of these is AMB Driving School (www.ambdriving.com). Customer Success Manager Syed Ali says that drivers new to Canada should go for certified courses. “ We consider them beginning drivers because of cultural differences,” he says. “If you didn’t get your driving abstract back home, we consider you a beginning driver and that’s what our course is called.” But Canada also has reciprocal driving agreements with several countries, including Australia, France, Japan, Korea, Austria, Belgium, Germany, Britain, Switzerland and the United States. This means that if you’re from one of these countries, you’ll be able to swiftly obtain an Ontario license without having to take either a road or written test. If your home country

is absent from this list, you will need to go through the entire process of acquiring an Ontario drivers license. You will also find that Canadian driving requirements and protocols tend to vary somewhat from province-to-province. For example, while most provinces state that the legal age for obtaining a learner’s permit is 16, in Alberta that age drops to 14. Transport Canada maintains links to provincial transport ministries, which can be found here: (Information Links (canada.ca) A requirement that all provinces share is the need for both a knowledge and a vision test. The latter will confirm that your ability to see clearly will enable you to be a safe driver, while the knowledge test assesses your comprehension of the driving regulations. Another commonality shared by all provinces is the use of a graduated licensing system. In Ontario for example, there’s two licenses, class G1 and G2, which are acquired by successfully passing tests prior to applying for class G, which is the full license. Drivers with less than 24 months experience or who cannot prove driving experience over 12 months will have to begin with the G1 license before taking the test for G2. Drivers unable to provide any



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proof of driving experience will have to start at the beginning. Similar rules apply in British Columbia with variations. Under this system, there’s two levels to complete: L (learner) and N (novice) An L stage driver requires a sign with the letter ‘L’ prominently displayed on the inside car’s back windshield that lets other drivers know the level of experience of that particular driver. This stage lasts a minimum of 12 months and also states that drivers: • Maintain a blood alcohol level of zero at all times while driving • Don’t drive between midnight and 5 a.m. • Limit the number of passengers to two, including a licensed driver who is over the age of 25. Once the class 7 road test has been successfully complete, drivers receive their N stage license. This phase lasts two years and requires drivers at this stage to post the letter ‘N’ in their car’s rear windshield. At the N stage, drivers need to limited the number of passengers to one, unless there’s also a licensed driver 25 or over also in the car and maintaining a blood alcohol level of zero at all times.

BE PROACTIVE For immigrants considering a move to Ontario, you can start the process of obtaining a license in that province prior to arrival in Canada. This can be achieved by bringing from your home country a translated copy of your driver’s license in one of Canada’s two official languages, a letter from the transportation authority in your home country confirming your license in either English or French and providing an international driver’s license or permit that allows you to drive for two months in Ontario, during which time you must apply for a license in that province. After arriving in Canada, you can apply for either a G1 or G2 Ontario license depending on your level of experience. Be sure to the following: Proof of previous driving experience, proof of identity (for example resident card or passport) and your current driver’s license issued from your home country. At the driver licensing office, you’ll need to take and pass both a vision and a written test, have your photo taken and pay all the applicable fees. It’s worth noting that all Ontario drivers are required to have car insurance. Once again, if you have a positive history with car insurance from your home country, this might be able to help you obtain better rates on your insurance policy in Canada. Ask your insurance company for a Letter of Experience, including the length of in-force policy history and your claims-free status. Produce these documents when asking about insurance quotes in Ontario. These are just some of the things to consider when thinking about driving in Canada. Be sure to research some of the perks offered by driving schools as well. ABT Canada’s Syed Ali notes that his school’s course is certified by Service Ontario, which means a reduction in waiting time for your G2 to eight months, down from one year. Other benefits include peace of mind and improved safety on the road. Some new Canadians in their relative infancy as drivers in their adopted country note other benefits. “You will never get lost in Canada,” says Calvin Adjijil. “At first, I was overwhelmed by the number of various directions, arrows, signals and street names everywhere but learning how to drive has made me realize their existence. They provide a wide range of information, serve as travel guidance and most importantly keep, not just me, but everyone safe.”


Crossword Contest

CROSSWORD (ANSWERS IN THE NEXT AUTO & TRUCKING ATLANTIC)

John L. Siteman of Oyster Pond, Jaddore, NS, is our latest Crossword Puzzle winner! Congratulations on winning your new Rust Check treatment. Deadline for entry is October 31s, 2022

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NAME:

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IT’S SO EASY TO WIN! Fill out info below and send your Crossword to us at 608 - 56 Jacob Lane, Bedford, NS B3M 0H5, or Email us at: rob@autoatlantic.com

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YOU TOO CAN WIN ONE FREE RUST CHECK ANNUAL SPRAY AT ANY RUST CHECK DEALER! ENTER FOR YOU CHANCE!

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CROSSWORD BY MURRAY JACKSON - THECROSSWORDGUY.COM

JULY 2022 WINNER!

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IT’S FUN! IT’S EASY! LAST ISSUE’S CROSSWORD 1

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NAPA Guess & Win contest

NAPA GUESS & WIN! BROUGHT TO YOU BY

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ASCAR Race fans, we need to know the name of this famous female racer, and please, you can tell us more about her team or car too. Details please and a FREE Stanley 1/4” and 3/8” Drive SAE 123pc Socket Set from NAPA is all yours! The more detail the better! Send in your answer at autoatlantic.com/Contest.htm or Email us at rob@autoatlantic.com, and make sure to include your name, town, province and telephone number. Maybe this time it’ll be you! Deadline for entry is October 31st, 2022.

Best wishes go to S c o t t Duncan of Petitcodiac , NB, who correctly answered “These are cars of the Maritime League of Legends Association which was formed in 2005 by a group of racer’s wanting to grow the Legends cars division in the Maritime Provinces race tour” Thank you to all who en tered our contest, keep trying, you could be next!

YOUR NAME: PHONE: ADDRESS: CITY / TOWN / VILLAGE: PROVINCE: POSTAL CODE: EMAIL: YOUR ANSWER:

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