The requirements for the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Mexican Truck Demonstration Project have been met, and some 37 Mexican trucking companies have been approved to run their long-haul rigs through the U.S. starting as early as Sept. 1, according to a Mexican government report.
In the United States, the inspector general of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on Aug. 6 issued to the House and Senate Appropriations Committee an audit about implementing NAFTA’s cross-border trucking provisions, the last hurdle DOT faced before allowing the Mexican truck demonstration project to begin.
As required by Congress, the report was withheld from public release until August 21 – 15 days after being delivered to Congress.
At that point, industry commentators instantly noted that the FMCSA inspector general requested that additional improvements be made in two areas: to improve the quality of the data used to monitor Mexican commercial driver traffic convictions in the United States and to ensure adequate capacity to inspect Mexican buses.
The first industry reaction was that the report had blocked DOT from allowing the Mexican truck demonstration project to start until the FMCSA had adequately satisfied the deficiencies noted in these two recommendations.
English Calls on Administration to Halt
Cross-Border Trucking Program
Jeopardizes Safety and Security of Americans
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Phil English (R-Pa.) is calling on the Bush Administration to halt the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) plans to provide Mexican motor-carriers unrestricted access in the United States. English was joined by a bipartisan group of 112 House lawmakers in a letter sent to the president on Monday.
“The Cross Border Demonstration Program would give Mexican truck drivers unfettered access to the United States without a demonstrable way to verify their identity, immigration status and length of stay in United States,” the members wrote. “The program would open major loopholes that would allow violators to disregard our laws because we have no verifiable system in place to identify and deal with them.”
Read the letter that 112 lawmakers signed and sent to President Bush six weeks ago, here: