Annette Sandberg, former Administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), was a guest speaker at the recent first annual transportation industry Carrier Council meeting. The meeting was held at the headquarters offices of the host company, Tucker Company, in Cherry Hill, NJ.
“The purpose of the Council meeting was to discuss issues of interest among senior executives from leading carriers, shippers and 3PLs,” stated Jeffrey Tucker, CEO of Tucker Company. “Topics discussed included ’ increasing communication, cooperation and productivity; safety and security; rising fuel costs; and emerging legal and regulatory trends.”
In her comments, Sandberg explained that two key developments will very likely lead to significant changes in the regulatory scheme affecting motor carriers. First, the congressional act that funds the FMCSA is scheduled for reauthorization in 2009, giving constituents such as safety advocacy groups and industry associations the opportunity to petition their representatives to make changes.
Second, according to Sandberg, is the recent publication by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) of an audit of the FMCSA’s SafeStat program, which tracks compliance and allows the FMCSA to identify higher risk motor carriers and target them for inspection. Sandberg said the GAO found the SafeStat model valid and effective, but recommended changes to its implementation that would increase the number of motor carriers inspected each year. She added that another possible development is the elimination entirely of the “Satisfactory” D.O.T. safety rating.
“I am proud to be associated with Tucker Company and the first Carrier Council,” Sandberg said. “In my tenure as Administrator of the FMCSA, I was acutely aware of the ever changing regulatory challenges facing the transportation industry. And as the CEO of TransSafe Consulting, I am committed to assisting shippers, carriers and 3PL’s in adapting to this rapidly evolving safety and security environment.”
John Gentle, former Global Leader of Transportation at Owens Corning, was also a featured speaker at the meeting.