WASHINGTON (June 4, 2013) —The International Brotherhood of Teamsters has asked for a rehearing on its challenge to the U.S. Department of Transportation's program involving trucks crossing the Mexican/U.S. border.
Last month the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit upheld the legality of the pilot program to open U.S. borders to what the Teamsters claim are unsafe Mexican trucks.
The Teamsters' petition argues a rehearing is necessary "because the panel's dismissal of Petitioners' claims...conflicts with decisions of this court and the U.S. Supreme Court."
According to a Teamsters press release, the Court of Appeals found that Mexico-domiciled trucks don't have to comply with federal safety requirements for vehicles introduced into interstate commerce.
The union said it believes that conclusion is "not only wrong, but contradicts a previous D.C. Circuit opinion about safety regulations for tires"—the National Association of Motor Bus Owners v. Brinegar.
"Our members who drive for a living should not have to put their lives at risk because dangerous trucks are allowed free use of our roads," said Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa in the press statement. "Nothing in the court's decision says Mexican trucks will be safe."
The Teamsters were joined by the Sierra Club in the petition for rehearing. The two groups are challenging the court's ruling on environmental grounds because it undercuts the National Environmental Policy Act. They claim the ruling violates the precedent that federal agencies must consider the environmental consequences of their actions before making decisions.
The Teamsters union represents more than 1.4 million members in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.