Problems inherent in trucking rules

Published 9:44 pm Friday, May 6, 2011

Once you get past the surface, certain problems seem to remain in this latest attempt by the FMCSA to allow long haul trucks from Mexico to go anywhere beyond the border region of the USA.

Problem: The state of Mexico is a failed state. Police are arrested by army units for drug dealing, special anti kidnapp police units are arrested for kidnapping, death tolls climb as police departments resign “en mass”, protesters against drug gang violence are killed outside state

capital buildings, and the State Department warns even official travelers not to travel in Mexico. How can any motor carrier safety group in the USA suggest we should allow long haul access to Mexican trucks and drivers with a straight face?

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Problem: The NAFTA agreement ( note it was never ratified as a treaty by the Senate as per the constitution and therefore does not have “treaty status”,) specifies that Mexican drivers and carriers must meet all USA

safety standards. In reality a quick search of the FMCSA data base shows more than 3,000 Mexican domiciled carriers who have already applied over

the years for DOT numbers. The only thing preventing those Carriers from long hauling in the USA right now is their failure to meet the same safety and regulatory standards every American and Canadian truck has to meet.

The only advantage a pilot program gives to Mexican carriers is the allowance of special wavers for those carriers so that they do not have to actually meet the legal requirments every truck here now has to meet.

Problem: The new provision requiring the FMCSA to finance and install EOBRS is a magicians trick pretending to solve problems that it wont solve

and at American tax payer expense. The claim that America must provide the device to have the right to access the data ignores the fact that any regulation that allows cross border trucking can simply demand the devices in exchange for the waivers that will be granted for mising data bases, and missing regulatory controls from the Mexican side. A further claim

made today that the EOBR will allow the American FMCSA to detect and stop cabotage was a joke. Those devices will not prevent cabotage, nor will

they actually give any information that will indicate cabotage is being committed if the cabotage is on the line of travel.

Problem: In response to the outcry of the American public, congress closed the last pilot project and forbade budgeting for another pilot project.

When did the FMCSA get the authority to over rule the intent of a law passed by congress which under the constitution has all the power to decide any new government spending. This new pilot program is a direct challenge to the law passed by congress and is a violation of the constitution. In a recorded conference today Ms Ferro did use the description “pilot program” and a 3 year limitation on “pilot programs” in her justification of the budgeting of $700,000 dollars to provide EOBRs to Mexican long haul trucks. I wonder considering these problems why the FMCSA seems determined to allow long haul trucks licensed in a failed state driven by drivers licensed by a failed state access to every town and road in the USA.

Walter Wade