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Frozen Tundra Trucking: Popular trucking show not on thin ice

TORONTO -- Fans of the History Channel's immensely popular TV series on ice-road truckers may be watching an entirely new cast of characters in the second season.

The producers of Ice Road Truckers are so encouraged by the ratings of the show's inaugural season, that they want to start filming a new set of episodes. However, a group of ice-road haulers that agreed to be part of the reality series are getting cold feet about a second go-around, CBC reported in January.

Deep Freeze: Truckers are concerned the show makes them
look more like ice cowboys (image courtesy The History Channel).

The reality show is supposed to document what life is like for a handful of truckers hauling goods along the frozen Contwoyto seasonal ice road that links Yellowknife with remote mining sites several hundred kilometers away.

But some of the companies claim that the show exaggerates the industry, glorifying the dangers of ice-road driving and depicts professional drivers as cowboys "making a dash for money at a very high risk," according to Tom Hoefer, a spokesman for diamond mine company Diavik. "It's very far, far from the reality of how we operate the road, and so we just didn't see any value in continuing that message," he told CBC, adding that the filming and mounted cameras were creating distractions for drivers.

Asked to respond, a History Channel spokesperson told Today's Trucking that the network has nothing but respect for the truckers and their professionalism.

"We appreciate the opportunity we had to work with the Contwoyto ice road to document the work of these pioneering truckers who are doing an extremely challenging job in harsh conditions to service the people and businesses in their community. For decades these truckers have been making a straight line in the frozen roads that are virtually unknown to the rest of the world."

The spokesperson couldn't say whether the network was scouting a new cast of truckers, but did confirm to us the show will definitely be back. "With the assistance of the territorial government we have identified another frontier and a new ice road for season two."

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