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Spring road weight restrictions eased in Manitoba during coronavirus outbreak

Weight restrictions typically in place on Manitoba highways and roads at this time of year are being eased amid COVID-19. File / Global News

Manitoba is easing spring road restrictions to help make sure essential goods get to where they’re going during the COVID-19 outbreak.

“In order to allow vehicles to more easily transport essential goods during the current COVID-19 pandemic, we are easing spring road restrictions in certain circumstances,” said Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler in a release.

“This will help ensure communities continue to have access to items such as medical supplies, groceries and emergency equipment at this crucial time.”

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Manitoba schools to remain closed indefinitely for school year

Normally weight restrictions are enforced during the spring to protect Manitoba roads from damage caused by heavy commercial vehicles while roads are at their weakest during spring rains and thawing.

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Under the revised rules this spring vehicles can carry essential commodities at normal loading on highways that are normally subject to Level 1 road restrictions, and roads normally subject to Level 2 restrictions under some conditions.

Complete details on road restrictions are available on the province’s website.

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The province says essential commodities include groceries, medical supplies, fuel, fertilizer, bulk milk, potable water for non-industrial use, emergency equipment and materials, and mail delivery on behalf of the Canada Post Corporation.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: 7 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba, Selkirk hospital employee tests positive

It also includes livestock and livestock feed in transit, and hay for feed in transit within Manitoba.

Permits will also not be required to transport grain to satisfy grain quotas or contracts, or to transport potatoes or vegetables from producer to processor this spring, the province added.

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Vehicles are still not allowed to cross over bridges or other structures in excess of posted weight restrictions.

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Coronavirus outbreak: 7 new cases of COVID-19 in Manitoba – Mar 31, 2020

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

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To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, click here.

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