FMCSA announced today the beginning of the 10 day comment period for the Mexican carrier Transportation and Cargo Solutions SA de CV (TRACSO) who recently passed it’s Pre-Authorization Safety Audit (PASA), a requirement prior to participating in the Cross Border Pilot Program with Mexico.
Comments are being accepted now through October 10, 2013 for anyone wishing to comment on the fitness of the Cd. Juarez, Chih. based carrier to enter the program.
Mexico Trucker Online will be assembling and submitting comments in favor of this carriers inclusion into the Cross Border Pilot Program on or before the due date.
SNAPSHOT OF TRACSO
Reviewing the documents on file with FMCSA concerning this carrier, they indicate that they will have 10 trucks and 10 drivers participating in the program.
The trucks in question are all 2013 Kenworth’s and a 2013 International Prostar and all have passed their initial PASA/CVSA and received the required stickers.
For practically every comment submitted by opponents of cross border trucking, one issue stands out. Failure of carriers to report affiliations with US carriers. Some, such as Advocates claim this is intentional and continue to urge FMCSA to file criminal felony perjury charges against the carriers and forbid them from participating in the program. So far, those efforts have failed, as FMCSA sees through the subterfuge.
TRACSO is no different. They have submitted a letter to FMCSA admitting affiliation with a US carrier that was not disclosed on the original application.
The letter states:
This is to inform you, that we applied for a USDOT number for XIM Enterprises LLC on September 2012 and we got the authority to operate on January 2013, by that time we had already filled out the TRACSO OP-1(MX) application, this is the reason we answer NIA. We would like to state that XIM Enterprises LLC has never operated. Luis E. Sotelo is the President of both companies.
Will this declaration prevent Advocate and OOIDA for using this as an excuse once more to oppose the inclusion of this carrier? Probably, but it’ll be for naught.
TRACSO - Affiliation Statement - Addendum to PASA 132.54 KB
SAFETY MEASUREMENT SCORES DO NOT REFLECT THE FITNESS OF THIS APPLICANT
One measure of a carriers fitness should be in their SMS scores built around the seven BASICS, five of which are available for public viewing on the FMCSA website. However, the Safety Measurement System, as it was established is seriously flawed and does not reflect a motor carriers true fitness to operate in most cases. And TRACSO is no exception.
At first glance, TRASCO has atrocious scores in two BASICS, Driver Fitness (99.3%) and Vehicle Maintenance (98.9%).
But when you look at the summary of activities for this carrier you see that in the 24 months previous to this date, they have a Driver Out of Service Rate (OOS) of only 1% out of 10,048 inspections. National Average for Driver OOS is 5.51%.
Similarly, the OOS rate on the vehicles is a low 13% our of 9,954 inspections. The National Average for vehicle OOS is 20.72%.
But here’s where the insanity of the Safety Measurement System comes into play. When we look at the Driver Fitness BASIC, we learn that in a 24 month period, TRACSO drivers have undergone the 10,048 inspections with 1800 violations discovered. And what was the most prominent violation?
391.11.(b)(2) Non-English Speaking Driver… More to the point, 1784 violation of this rule which is supposed to be an OOS violation, yet none were put out of service. If you cull those number from the Driver Fitness Basic, the percentage drops below 0.1%.
The rule is arbitrary and capricious in the manner it’s enforced. There is no real guidance or guidelines within the rule that spells out exactly what is “sufficient” to be in compliance with the rule. CVSA offers the guideline that a subject is in compliance if he makes an effort to comply. Otherwise, it’s left to the whim of the inspector.
Then we go to the Vehicle Maintenance BASIC and without spending a lot of time on it, we see the majority of violations are not particularly safety related to the point that they would effect the safe operation of the vehicle. And indeed, many of the violations are found found on US owned trailers the company tractors are pulling as these SMS numbers appear to be exclusively obtained by the carrier operating under it’s Mx-OP2 authority, cross border drayage within the commercial zone.
These are some of the top violations discovered:
Oil of Grease Leak (2775)
Failing to secure brake hose/tubing against mechanical damage (2508)
Bearing in mind, these are not the trucks that have been cleared to participate in the Cross Border Pilot Program.
TRASCO currently lists 154 tractors, 300 trailers and 154 drivers operating under it’s commercial zone authority. In 2012, they reported 4,570,000 miles traveled with gross revenue of $17,932,347.00. Dayum! That’s $3.92 cpm mile average. Has someone been whining about the Mexicans hauling cheap freight?
35 years in the trucking business and living in Mexico for the past 15 years, make me uniquely qualified to offer my insight and opinion into the Mexican trucking industry and other border issues. A contributor to SiriuxXM Road Dog Channel 106 and to the award winning Lockridge Report, Mexico Trucker Online continues to publish the unvarnished truth about the subjects we cover.