Wednesday, September 14, 2011


U.S. DOT Plans To Start Pilot Program Within Next Few Months

The Teamsters have filed suit to block the U.S. Department of Transportation from opening the U.S. border to Mexican trucks through an illegal pilot program.

The International Brotherhood of Teamsters and Public Citizen challenged the program in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. The suit, filed last week, claims the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration breaks the following laws:

It waives a law that trucks must display certain proof that they meet federal safety standards.

It breaks the law requiring the pilot program to achieve an equivalent level of safety because Mexican drivers don’t have to meet the same physical requirements as U.S. drivers.

It breaks the law that Mexico must provide simultaneous and comparable access to U.S. trucks. Mexico cannot do so because of the limited availability of ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel in Mexico.

It breaks the law that the pilot program must include enough participants to be statistically valid. The FMCSA’s proposal would let only the best Mexican trucks participate, which would allow it to justify letting any Mexican truck over the border in the future.

“The last thing America needs right now is a guest-worker program on wheels,” said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa. “We created zero jobs last month. Why would the Transportation Department threaten American warehouse and trucking jobs, while undermining highway safety? How can they even consider opening the border when drug violence is out of control in Mexico? DOT is sadly mistaken if it thinks this program is in America’s best interest.”

“Congress has repeatedly and overwhelmingly set stringent safety conditions for any cross-border trucking program, and this one clearly doesn’t meet those conditions,” Hoffa said.

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