U.S. DOT and Cross Border Trucking With Mexico
Hal Kiah / Truckers Lives in The Balance / North American Trucking Alerts
OOIDA Petitions to Intervene in Cross-border Trucking Lawsuit
In an article from Online Trucking News, OOIDA, soon followed along with the Teamsters Union who filed suit against the DOT in an effort to stop the attempt to allow cross border trucking to begin with our neighbor to the south, Mexico.
OOIDA and the teamsters seem to share the same opinion that the data collected by the DOT about the safety and regulatory practices of the Mexican government is insufficient and does not appropriately reflect measures taken by the Mexican government in ensuring that trucks and drivers coming from Mexico into the United States can, and will, meet the standards that are set for American and Canadian trucking.
With the FMCSA’s weak record of regulating trucking in the United States being what it is, it seems proper that this suit goes forward and makes sure that more steps be taken to make not only Mexican carriers, but also, the DOT, accountable to meet all standards set for US and Canadian trucking to be the same, and that more be done to fully evaluate which carriers are allowed into North America.
OOIDA feels that the U.S. DOT’s three-year pilot program did not create sufficient data to reach a proper conclusion about whether our southern border should be opened. OOIDA questioned the DOT’s evaluation and validity of the information collected during the pilot program that they instituted several years ago. With OOIDA being the only organization that is currently standing up in Washington in favor of the Small business trucking companies and professional truckers, I feel that it is proper for all truckers and trucking companies in the US and Canada to stand with them in full support of preventing the border to be open to cross border trucking in the south, until it can be fully established that any Mexican carriers that wish to do business here, can be fully vetted and can insure that they can be fully compliant with US trucking safety regulations.
Considering what many US and Canadian truckers have seen of the trucks, and drivers that current cross the southern border to transfer goods to our local distribution outlets and American trucking terminals, I feel that the concern presented by the Teamsters Union and OOIDA, are very much within the concerns of all North American truckers and their companies. The equipment I have seen coming across the border, even though most are only local trucks, have been far from anything that I would be willing to allow to operate on the corridors of the US, and fall far short of being anything safe traveling across country. Case in point would be any trucker who has been to Laredo, Tx. While there are many of the Mexican drivers that bring goods across the border, both to, and from, Texas and Mexico, who are reasonable and safe drivers, there are also those who drive in such a way that makes a certain area of your body want to pucker up and say, “Oh, my Gosh!” Along with some of the equipment that is being used to move those goods across the border.
Do I think that it is a good idea to allow cross border trucking to take place with Mexico??? Honestly, No, and there are reasons for these feelings. First of which being the Teamsters, and OOIDA’s concerns about Mexican carriers being able to fully comply with US DOT rules and regulations and meeting the standards set for safe operation. The second reason, to me, would be safety concerns for US drivers crossing the border into, and out of Mexico. With all the drug activity that is happening so close to the border, and further in-country, what are the chances of actual safe travels for American and Canadian drivers?
Right now?????, the DOT needs to put the brakes on, and get serious about conducting honest, hard, up-front checks and inspections of equipment currently crossing the border into local area warehouses, where they are supposed to he limited to, and continue those studies and even sit down with senior truckers in this country, to discuss what they have found to date, and have those drivers add their voices to the mix of discussions prior to enacting any legislation on allowing steps to be taken that will directly affect trucking in this country, along with putting an indefinite hold on enacting legislation giving any lee-way to access our highways.
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