Manitoba Public Insurance brings first-time opportunity for regular Class 5 licences in St. Theresa Point First Nation

In its continuing efforts to improve road safety in Manitoba, Manitoba Public Insurance is now offering unrestricted class 5 road tests in St. Theresa Point. Previously, residents who passed in-car testing in this community would qualify for a conditional driver’s licence which required a qualified supervising driver to be in the vehicle when travelling on provincial roadways.

Recently, traffic control signage was erected by members of the community, providing a more realistic road test experience. Based on this new infrastructure, MPI is now able to offer candidates access to road tests that will qualify for regular Class 5 driver’s licence.

“This is the culmination of positive, on-going discussions with band councilors and Manitoba Public Insurance,” said Curtis Wennberg, vice-president, Customer Service & COO, Manitoba Public Insurance.

“Holding a valid driver’s licence will allow area drivers to legally travel on winter roads and the broader provincial highway system. This personal mobility can lead to enhanced job opportunities.”

St. Theresa First Nation is only accessible by airplane or winter roads. There are about 14,000 people within the Island Lake area comprised of St. Theresa Point, Wasagamack, Garden Hill and Island Lake. Residents now have the ability to take both their knowledge tests and in-car driving tests in St. Theresa Point. It’s estimated that about 80 per cent of the population within these areas do not have Class 5 full licence.

“Manitoba Public Insurance is bringing in staff from other regions to conduct both knowledge and in-car tests,” said Wennberg. “The Corporation is proactively working with local government to ensure rural and remote communities get the service they need. The addition of traffic signage within the community has made this possible and we encourage their use.”

In order to best serve its northern customers, Manitoba Public Insurance also implemented a payment process where customers can load an MPI WE Card at the Northern Store. Customers are then given a receipt which they present as payment at the time of their test.

High school driver education services also being expanded

In addition to these service enhancements, Manitoba Public Insurance is working with community leaders to expand its High School Driver Education program into the Island Lake region of the province. Doing so will give new generations of drivers access to the same professional driver training services available to new teen drivers in other rural Manitoba communities.

Earlier this year, the Corporation announced similar expansions to four Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO) communities: Cross Lake, Split Lake, Nelson House and Norway House.

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