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9/17/2004
SPECIAL REPORT: Amendment would require Mexican trucks to meet U.S. safety standards

OOIDA urges members to support measure

The House is expected to vote Wednesday, Sept. 22, on a highway safety amendment that would require Mexican-domiciled trucks to meet the same safety standards as U.S. trucks if they want to travel on highways here.

The amendment has not yet been introduced, and is referred to as the Olver amendment, after U.S. Rep. John W. Olver, D-MA, who plans to introduce it at 10 a.m. EDT Sept. 22. A vote would follow that.

Jim Johnston, president and CEO of OOIDA, wrote to Olver Tuesday, Sept. 21, to support the congressman's efforts.

"Federal law requires that all vehicles sold, imported, or driven in the United States must be certified to be in compliance with motor carrier safety standards," Johnston wrote. "Compliance with safety rules such as these by Mexican and Canadian trucks is a part of the NAFTA agreement.

"OOIDA believes that any rule that would permit less than full compliance with motor carrier safety rules by foreign trucks would be in violation of NAFTA and would greatly compromise the recent efforts of Congress and the FMCSA to improve motor carrier safety."

Todd Spencer, executive vice president of OOIDA, said the association was urging all its members, as well as all other truckers, to contact their representatives in Congress and support Olver's amendment.

Any member of the U.S. House or Senate can be reached through the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121.

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