Watch: Quebec’s so-called construction holiday is coming to an end
MONTREAL — It’s back to work next week for many Quebecers, as the so-called province-wide construction holiday comes to an end.
“People should expect it will take more time to drive, or to go through, let’s say, for instance, the bridges giving access to the island of Montreal,” said Mario St-Pierre, spokesperson for Transports Quebec.
“We expect it to slow down because there will be more cars than usual.”
As many hit the road to make their way home after vacation, Quebec’s provincial police is warning drivers to be very careful.
Watch: Construction holiday precautions
“This year, for now, we have had 10 fatal crashes with 11 deceased,” said Audrey-Anne Bilodeau, a spokesperson for the Sûreté du Québec.
“Right now, we’re exactly at the same point that we were last year at the end of this construction holiday, so we hope that there’s not going be any more [fatal accidents] on Saturday or Sunday.”
Nearly one quarter of Quebec workers take their vacation during the last two weeks of July.
This includes workers from all industries, not just construction. Still, not all workers are away on holiday; some have been working all summer.
“In the civil workforce, we don’t have to take vacation,” said Peter Gagnon, a construction worker who was working on Friday at the corner of Atwater and Sainte-Catherine streets in Montreal.
“We can work whenever we want, it’s our choice to work.
“We decided to work, and we’ll take our vacation a little later on in the year to get it done,” he added, referring to the work they have left.
Most roadwork supervised by Transports Quebec, as well as some commercial companies, will also continue over the weekend, so Quebecers shouldn’t expect the roads to be completely clear on their way home Sunday.
“We tell people it’s better to look ahead of time on Quebec 511 to see all the hindrances that they might encounter while moving from point A to point B,” noted St-Pierre.
As for where construction workers take their holidays?
“I’m going on vacation in September to Portugal,” smiled Gagnon. “A nice little island called Madeira.”