Mexican Trucks on U.S. Roads


Home is the open road for thousands of Texas truckers.

But, when it comes to sharing that home with trucks from Mexico, many are not please with the idea of an open house.

Trucker John Struess says, "Safety. They run junk down there. It's as simple as that."

Trucks from the bordering countries are currently allowed to only go 20 miles into each other's country when delivering cargo.

However, the Bush administration has unveiled a plan allowing 100 freighters from Mexico to move cargo much deeper into the states in compliance with NAFTA.

NAFTA covers access to U.S. highways by the year 2000, but that particular part of the agreement has been stalled by repeated litigation.

Support for the pilot program points that the U.S. can't exclude all Mexican trucks on the assumption that they're unsafe. The U.S. government has the right and need to demand that Mexican freighters be safe, but cannot assume that they're not.

This would require interviewing drivers and inspecting trucks at the border to ensure load are correct and the drivers can speak and read English.

University of Houston law professor Steven Zamora said, "We have flat out not complied with our obligation to allow Mexican trucks here on the assumption they would be unsafe. And you can't assume a product is unsafe. You have to prove it."