Is the U.S. using the issue of truck safety as a trade barrier to Mexico?

Essay by mamekUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, March 2002

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1. Is the U.S. using the issue of truck safety as a trade barrier? What proof can you offer?

I think U.S. is using the issue of truck safety as a trade barrier because the increase in Mexican trucks within the limited border zone has had an adverse affect on safety in the U.S. For example, in Texas border counties, within the commercial border zone, have seen a dramatic increase in highway fatalities and serious injuries from truck with Mexican registration. Another dramatic case in California, a Mexican truck was involved in a 10-car pileup that killed four California motorists north of San Diego. These fatal crashes are bound to increase if the border is opened, and the number of trucks increases rapidly without meaningful Mexican safety system in effect.

On the other hand, The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was supposed to create unrestricted access to markets throughout the North American continent.

NAFTA called for Mexican trucks to have unrestricted access to highways in Border States - Texas, California, New Mexico and Arizona - by 1995 and full access to all US highways by January 2000. But Former US President Clinton in 1995, motivated by safety concerns raised by unions representing US truckers, blocked the trade agreement's trucking provisions thus refusing entry to Mexican truckers along the two countries' 2,100 mile border.

2. What recourse do Mexican truckers have to get past this ban?

In order for Mexican truckers to get past this ban, the Mexican government and truckers must fulfill its promise to implement high safety standards and a regulatory framework necessary to enforce them. For example,

Raising Mexican truck safety standards would have an enormous benefit for the safety of Mexican motorists and communities.

Limiting the number of hours truck drivers work will help prevent...