Clapp confirmation to helm of FMCSA delayed

By Land Line staff | 9/26/2001

Federal Highway Administration spokesman David Longo said Tuesday that the confirmation of Joseph Clapp to head the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has been delayed. The U.S. Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee last week approved Clapp as the first administrator of FMCSA, but the Senate has yet to accept the committee's confirmation.

Nominations usually face hearings with testimony from witnesses and questions from lawmakers, etc. The committee, anxious to address aviation security concerns in the wake of the attacks of Sept. 11, skipped that part and quickly approved the White House's choice. Just as quickly, the Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways (CRASH) roared their disapproval.

"This action was taken without any public hearing or substantive input from the safety community," CRASH told its members in an urgent alert to action. "Due to Mr. Clapp's background we have grave reservations about his ability to objectively lead this agency."

CRASH says the background it refers to includes Clapp's alleged "open hostility to safety groups critical of commercial carriers" when Clapp was the CEO of Roadway Express. CRASH is questioning Clapp's safety priorities, citing " well documented litigation history showing Roadway Express consistently encourages commercial drivers to violate hours-of-service rules and regulations."