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Truckers must talk English [Laredo, Texas]
LAREDO MORNING TIMES ^ | 08/26/2007 | MIGUEL TIMOSHENKOV and VICENTE RANGEL

Posted on 08/26/2007 10:57:58 AM PDT by SwinneySwitch

A commercial truck driver from Monterrey who has crossed Laredos international bridges countless times was stunned earlier this month when he received a ticket from U.S. inspectors because he cant speak English."We were worried," said Samuel Tamez Treviño, owner of the truck that was driven by Rafael Segovia. "We consulted with attorneys. We were somewhat relieved when they told us it would be treated as a warning. But now what are we supposed to do?"

Tamez Treviño, whose transportation company is in Montemorelos, is concerned that his drivers may be unable or unwilling to learn English, considering that even a short, intense course to learn the basics can take five months.

Segovia, who was back home and unavailable for comment, was handed the citation on Aug. 2 at about 4:45 p.m. at the Colombia-Solidarity International Bridge. He also was cited for having non-working brake lights and a leaky hydraulic hose, which are fairly routine violations.

Tamez Treviño said hes never heard of any law requiring that his drivers know English. Many company owners dont speak English, let alone their workers, many of whom dont even have a high school education.

The law requiring that Mexican truckers coming into the United States speak English has been on the books for years, but it has taken on renewed significance with the coming implementation of a new provision that will allow up to 100 Mexican carriers to go beyond the border zone. It also will allow up to 100 U.S. carriers to go deep into Mexico with their loads.

While many international trade supporters praise the move as long overdue and a natural outgrowth of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the plan has many critics, including labor leaders and some U.S. transportation companies who fear the Mexican trucks will be unsafe and create unnecessary risks on U.S. highways.

Nevertheless, a demonstration project is set to begin within a few weeks, allowing Mexican carriers that have passed the required safety audit to take their trucks onto U.S. roads.

Mexican truckers have their own complaints.

"Theyre already bothering us in the United States and it hasnt even started," said Luis Moreno Sesma, president of the Nuevo Laredo branch of Canacar, a national association of transportation company owners. "Its not fair to require English in the commercial (border) zone."

Federal transportation officials in Laredo declined to comment, but a spokeswoman for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in Washington said truck drivers who are working only in the border commercial zone may be found in violation of the law for not being able to communicate in English but wont be stopped from crossing.

Those truck drivers who are headed past the border commercial zone, however, will not be allowed to continue their trip if they cant speak English, the spokeswoman said.

"The Mexican drivers may receive citations," said the spokeswoman, who declined to give her name, "but that doesnt mean they have to stop working."

Asked why the Mexican drivers werent given notice about the plan to start enforcing the law, the spokeswoman said Mexican authorities have been fully aware of the plan for some time. The Ministry of Communications and Transportation was involved in creating the demonstration program thats set to start soon.

"Whether the Mexican government has or has not informed the drivers about this law, well, thats something we cant answer for them," she said.

For his part, Moreno Sesma said transportation company owners should form an alliance to seek help from Tamaulipas Gov. Eugenio Hernández Flores.

The leader said he can see the need for drivers heading into the U.S. interior to know English, but insisted that regulation shouldnt apply to those who only drive in the border commercial zone.

(To reach Miguel Timoshenkov call 728-2583 or timo1@lmtonline.com. Laredo Morning Times staffer Norma Mendiola contributed to this report.)


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Foreign Affairs; Mexico; News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: aliens; anglosphere; dot; english; englishonly; immigration; language; laredo; nafta; trade; transportation; truckers; trucking
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To: Squantos
1. Do they think that when a Mexican truck breaks down in Oklahoma and they can't speak English we will take the time to figure out what's wrong and then fix it while he pays in pesos?

2. Or will he have to wait 24 hours for his com padres to send a repair vehicle/replacement tractor?

I vote for #2.

21 posted on 08/26/2007 11:15:17 AM PDT by rocksblues (Just enforce the law!)
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To: SwinneySwitch

>>Truckers must talk English<<

Perhaps they will also speak English. Perhaps the journalist who wrote this headline could use a refresher course.


22 posted on 08/26/2007 11:16:23 AM PDT by gondramB (Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words)
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To: All

i’m talking to the mexicans that feel that they are being stopped unfairly.

the facts is, highway patrols stop truckers frequently.

so, mexicans are not being treated unfairly.


23 posted on 08/26/2007 11:17:06 AM PDT by ken21
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To: rocksblues

2. Or will he have to wait 24 hours for his com padres to send a repair vehicle/replacement tractor?

Or an official translator!!


24 posted on 08/26/2007 11:17:34 AM PDT by acoulterfan
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To: bjcintennessee

Ping


25 posted on 08/26/2007 11:18:03 AM PDT by ImaTexan
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To: Tijeras_Slim

Tag line was boke !!! had to fixit !.......:o)

But I like yer idea better !


26 posted on 08/26/2007 11:18:28 AM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet. )
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Anyone wondering what Mexico requires for a driver’s license?

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/fr/1402941/posts


27 posted on 08/26/2007 11:20:46 AM PDT by fight_truth_decay
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To: acoulterfan

I am sure buried somewhere in the countless pages of double speak in this law we will be required to provide the translator out of the tax payers pocket not the Mexican authorities.


28 posted on 08/26/2007 11:22:49 AM PDT by rocksblues (Just enforce the law!)
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To: ken21

Like hell they do! The truck speed limit in California is 55 mph. They pass me when I’m doing 70. I have never seen a semi pulled over for speeding. NEVER!


29 posted on 08/26/2007 11:22:50 AM PDT by DoughtyOne
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To: SwinneySwitch

¿Que?


30 posted on 08/26/2007 11:22:51 AM PDT by traumer
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To: tubebender; Pete-R-Bilt; glock rocks; stephenjohnbanker
Why would a foreign truck driver have to be able to speak English? Do you think it might have something to do with his being able to understand what emergency personnel and cops are directing him to do?

I think all the emergency personnel and cops should be required to speak Spanish, Nicaraguan, Guatemalan, Cuban, Iraqi, and the rest of them obscure languages. After all they do have a higher IQ than these foreigners, or so we are told.

That's fair isn't it? We don't want to be called racists, that I do know.

31 posted on 08/26/2007 11:23:21 AM PDT by B4Ranch ("Freedom is not free, but don't worry the U.S. Marine Corps will pay most of your share.")
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To: SwinneySwitch

No problem! It doesn’t matter where they’re from; just put a CB mic in their hand and, before ya know it, they’ll sound like they’re from south Alabama!


32 posted on 08/26/2007 11:23:38 AM PDT by uglybiker (relaxing in a luxuriant cloud of quality, aromatic, pre-owned tobacco essence)
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To: rocksblues

Me too ........No# 2 !

I predict bad wrecks on interstates as well. People won’t give these manure haulers same respect and courtesy they give US truckers.

But then there is that mass inertia physics thang so I don’t plan to be a victim by getting squished playing road games with em. I’ll just call the cops on em.

Just buying fuel is gonna be their major problem IMO.


33 posted on 08/26/2007 11:23:40 AM PDT by Squantos (Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet. )
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To: SwinneySwitch
"Tamez Treviño, whose transportation company is in Montemorelos, is concerned that his drivers may be unable or unwilling to learn English, considering that even a short, intense course to learn the basics can take five months."

Two words, Señor Treviño, Rosetta Stone.

34 posted on 08/26/2007 11:24:41 AM PDT by JustaDumbBlonde
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To: SwinneySwitch
"We consulted with attorneys. We were somewhat relieved when they told us it would be treated as a warning. But now what are we supposed to do?"

Gosh, what a predicament. I have NO IDEA how to solve this kind of problem, nope, none at all.

/sarc

I hope these guys know what the big red sign with the letters S-T-O-P means, along with WRONG WAY, ONE WAY and so on. Not that there any safety concerns or anything.

35 posted on 08/26/2007 11:26:58 AM PDT by Disambiguator (What's the temperature, Albert?)
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To: DoughtyOne

Like hell they do! The truck speed limit in California is 55 mph. They pass me when I’m doing 70. I have never seen a semi pulled over for speeding. NEVER!

Either have I!! We do have an interior checkpoint/truck scales around the Camp Pendleton area so they ARE checked there.


36 posted on 08/26/2007 11:27:25 AM PDT by acoulterfan
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To: rocksblues

“The Mexican drivers may receive citations,” said the spokeswoman, who declined to give her name, “but that doesnt mean they have to stop working.”

No translators needed, no English needed either.


37 posted on 08/26/2007 11:27:53 AM PDT by sheana
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To: SwinneySwitch
The law requiring that Mexican truckers coming into the United States speak English has been on the books for years...

So has the law about illegal entry into the United States.

Maybe we should point out that the airline industry also has international treaties declaring English as the official language for airline pilots, too.

-PJ

38 posted on 08/26/2007 11:28:09 AM PDT by Political Junkie Too (Repeal the 17th amendment -- it's the "Fairness Doctrine" for Congress!)
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To: SwinneySwitch
"He also was cited for having non-working brake lights and a leaky hydraulic hose, which are fairly routine violations."

Just judging from local experience, the list of 'fairly routine' infractions goes way beyone leaking break lines - which are only routine until the breaks fail at freeway speed.

"Tamez Treviño said hes never heard of any law requiring that his drivers know English. Many company owners dont speak English, let alone their workers, many of whom dont even have a high school education."

I'd expect no more - but it would be nice if the Morning Times asked for a high school education for its reporters.

Further comment; I don't know about this 'one hundred mile' zone they keep talking about because Los Angeles is well over a hundred from the border and we are crawling with Frontiera plates and mexican truck drivers from PU to Semis. (They already tried once to unionize around the harbor routes & when I drove the 710 mornings it was a mine field of miscellaneous bits and pieces.)

39 posted on 08/26/2007 11:28:21 AM PDT by norton
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To: PeteB570
Could be that when they are stopped for speeding or other infractions they will be able to converse with the LEO. Not just “No hablo”

Fine. Park their butts until they get themselves an interpreter. See how the Mexican trucking firms react to that.

40 posted on 08/26/2007 11:30:28 AM PDT by glock rocks (Please pray every day for our Patriot Armed Forces fighting to protect our way of life.)
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