September 2001

Losing truck jobs to Mexico

I have been in the trucking industry for 13 years, and I am outraged. Have we gotten so off-track helping other countries that U.S. citizens are going to be left jobless? We need to look at opening the Mexican border and the effects it will have on truckers and trucking companies.

Drivers have to support themselves and keep their trucks up to par to stay on the roads. Now we find out the government is going to use our tax dollars to ensure that Mexican trucks are up to par and meet U.S. safety qualifications. Opening the border to Mexico will force U.S. truck drivers to lower their rates to compete with Mexican drivers. With rising fuel prices, the U.S. truck driver will eventually go broke and be forced to shut down.

We all need to unite on this and fight to keep our jobs. Otherwise, we are going to end up like other countries and have to turn to others for a handout.

Please send a letter to the government with your feelings on this issue.

Robert J. McGranaghan
West Lebanon, N.H.

Generosity brightens trucking family’s day

On July 18, my husband, my handicapped son and I stopped for a bite to eat at a Petro in Bordentown, N.J., after we had spent the night in a garage with no air conditioner. We knew we had to try and make six pickups that day in the heat by 6 p.m., and we were not feeling our best. When we asked for our bill, we were told it had been paid by a driver who had been sitting behind us. I was touched. I was raised all my life in the trucking industry and know how thoughtful some drivers can be. This act of kindness not only touched my heart, but it also made a better day with my son and husband. Some days are truly hard with my son, especially when it’s hot.

To the driver who paid for our meal, I know you are a special person with kindness in your heart. God bless you.

Jennifer Lee
Bushnell, Fla.

Trucker concerned with hours regulations

Here we are in the seventh inning stretch of 2001, and we still have not learned the new hours-of-service proposals. It seems logical that nobody is in favor of having to install black boxes in all trucks. It will be expensive, and a good, safe driver won’t gamble with his life and drive tired.

Kirk Gill
Sebree, Ky.

Big Brother watching?

Recently a car rental company in Hartford, Conn., put a hardly noticeable but highly punishable penalty clause in their contract. The company, using global positioning satellite equipment, monitors the position and speed of their vehicles. Anyone who exceeds the speed limits for more than 2 miles will be fined more than $100, which will be added to the contract fee. Customers are not verbally informed of this ahead of time.

While I do not condone speeding or breaking the law, I wonder how far Big Brother will be allowed to take our rights as American citizens to use our own good judgment. I also wonder how long it will be before professional drivers are required to have GPS equipment installed in their trucks.

It’s time to take a stand before the government uses this as another way to infringe on our freedoms, pocketbooks and lives.

Mark Zebrowski
Milwaukee, Wis.