Canadian Trucking Alliance

Canadian Trucking Alliance

May 28, 2009 14:44 ET

Trucking Chief "Nervous" as New Border Documentation Deadline Looms

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - May 28, 2009) - With the June 1st deadline for the implementation of new US border documentation requirements only days away, the trucking industry is on edge about how the requirements will be applied to truck drivers delivering Canada's exports to the United States.

Under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, or WHTI, commercial truck drivers from Canada have a number of alternative ways to demonstrate their citizenship and identity to US border officials. They can present a passport, a frequent traveler card issued under the Canada - US NEXUS program, a security enhanced drivers' license, or a security card issued under the bilateral Free And Secure Trade program, commonly referred to as FAST. The trucking industry has long felt that FAST cards, which have been issued to tens of thousands of commercial truck drivers on both sides of the border, would be the alternative of choice, and the Canadian Trucking Alliance has actively promoted its use within its membership.

Nevertheless, some concerns remain. In the months leading up to WHTI implementation, US Customs and Border Protection and the Canada Border Services Agency have been replacing existing FAST cards with a newer generation card with enhanced security features. And while US officials assured CTA as recently as last week that both the new and old versions of the card will be acceptable, there are concerns that this message may not have filtered down to all of the front line officers who make the ultimate determination of who is permitted entry to the US.

"The trucking industry has worked diligently to prepare for the new documentation requirements" commented CTA Chief Executive Officer David Bradley. "We are hopeful that there will be no surprises come Monday, but a lot depends on matters that are out of our control at this stage. We have good lines of communication to senior US border officials, and we will call upon them to address any problems that may emerge quickly so that truck traffic and trade is not disrupted."

About Canadian Trucking Alliance - CTA is a federation of provincial trucking associations. We represent a broad cross-section of the trucking industry-some 4,500 carriers, owner-operators and industry suppliers. With our head office in Ottawa and provincial association offices in Langley, Calgary, Regina, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal and Moncton, CTA represents the industry's viewpoint on national and international policy, regulatory and legislative issues that affect trucking.

Contact Information

  • Canadian Trucking Alliance
    Jennifer Fox
    Assistant Vice President, Customs
    416-249-7401 x 248