Professional, Polite, Prepared to Kill

Ray LaHood sworn in as secretary of transportation


WASHINGTON — Ray H. LaHood was sworn in as Secretary of Transportation Friday, just one day after being unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate.  

The ceremony was small, attended by his wife Kathy and son Sam.  

Also present were fellow Illinoisan Sen. Richard J. Durbin, assistant majority leader and a small audience of LaHood’s new staff and members of the Department of Transportation transition team.  More from The Trucker

The appointment has one of the few bright spots in the new administration.  The Trucker article states:

Rep. Byron Dorgan, D.-N.D., made it clear during the committee confirmation hearing Jan. 21 that he expects LaHood, a Republican, to kill the Cross Border Demonstration Project within two months.

Let’s hope LaHood makes good on that projection and kills the Mexican truck pilot program. 

Ode to Juan and Moe – cowritten by ATAW commander-and-chief, Mark R. Taylor, performed by Truck It Records’ (and ATAW favorite recording artist), Joey Holiday.

January 25, 2009 Posted by | Border Security, Mexican Truck Pilot Program, NAFTA, NAU, Politics, trucking | , , , , | Leave a comment

Special Santa Skylanes Mean No Delay for Santa’s Sleigh


Santa and Col. Steven Shepro look on while U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters signs off on special “Santa Skylanes,” Santa will have access to the same military airspace that President Bush announced would be made available to civilian flights during the holiday period.

Photo Credit: US Dept of Trans/James Kim Photography

Santa Claus will enjoy special express lanes in the skies over the United States to help him make speedy deliveries to good girls and boys on Christmas Eve, U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary E. Peters announced today.

By using the special “Santa Skylanes,” Santa will have access to the same military airspace that President Bush announced would be made available to civilian flights during the holiday period.

“We know Santa Claus must adhere to a really tight schedule to get to every house on his list,” said Secretary Peters, as she presented Santa his Christmas Eve flight certificate at Andrews Air Force Base.  “Allowing him to use military airspace will ensure that crowded skies won’t mean empty stockings on Christmas morning.  It just wouldn’t do to have the gridlock Grinch stealing Christmas.”        

Secretary Peters said the temporary use of military airspace for civilian flights, made available by the U.S. AIr Force, significantly reduced travel times during last year’s holiday period.  Last year’s “Holiday Express Lanes” allowed some East Coast flights to trim 100 miles off their trip, while 4,800 flights used California military airspace to save over 99,000 miles. 

This year, Holiday Express Lanes have been expanded to help Santa and commercial aircraft navigate over busy areas of the Midwest, the Southwest, and the West Coast, including the skies over Phoenix and Los Angeles.  Over the Thanksgiving weekend, the lanes were used by almost 2,400 flights and were especially helpful in routing around bad weather on Nov. 30, the busy Sunday after Thanksgiving. 

Press release from the Department of Transportation

December 18, 2008 Posted by | trucking | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pittsylvania County (Virginia) Sheriff’s Office warns of bogus letter

CHATHAM — The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office received an alert today from T.E. Frazier of the U.S. Department of Transportation about a fraudulent letter being mailed out to trucking and transportation companies, according to a news release from Sheriff Mike Taylor.

The letter is requesting financial information that USDOT does ask for in the format provided, the release states.

The letter, signed with the name Robert Dal, claiming to be a senior processing officer with USDOT, tells the targeted businesses that they need to submit their financial information release form or they will not be eligible for procurement with USDOT for the fourth quarter of 2008, the release states.

Anyone receiving this letter is urged to contact their local law enforcement agency.  From

Beware of scams – especially those asking for financials.  The DoT has more information as well as an example of the letter here.


June 4, 2008 Posted by | BOLO and Crime, trucking | , | Leave a comment

Toll Booths from Sea to Shining Sea

DoT Secretary Mary Peters is showing her brilliance again today. On the DoT’s blog, Fastlane, she seems to be advocating a national toll road system under the guise of supporting the gas tax holiday. I agree with Peters – the fuel taxes are not going where they are supposed to go but are we to actually believe funds from a nationwide toll road will, either?
Comments anyone?

A Gas Tax Holiday?
Several proposals have been floated on Capitol Hill that would give Americans a summer gas tax holiday by temporarily eliminating the federal 18.4 cents a gallon tax on fuel. While the Administration is remaining neutral on the question, I welcome the debate, and think it is a terrific opportunity to have a larger discussion about the gas tax.

As the primary federal funding mechanism for our national highway system, the gas tax is increasingly outdated, inefficient, and unpopular. When President Eisenhower envisioned our interstate system, he favored a user-pay method of financing its construction and maintenance. Unfortunately, he was limited by the technologies of his day.

Now, however, we have exciting new financing mechanisms that are supplementing the gas tax while simultaneously reducing congestion. Through the broad deployment of high-speed, open road tolling technologies coupled with hundreds of billions of dollars of private sector capital, we can begin eliminating our dependence on a failed gas tax-based transportation model.

It is time for our country to embrace a far more efficient, clean, and technology-based approach to charging for road use. This new approach will dramatically improve the quality and performance of our transportation systems. It will also give businesses and families the type of predictable and reliable service levels to which they have become accustomed when making phone calls, running the sink, or turning on the lights. We can also eliminate Washington’s ability to use our transportation network as its own personal—and political—sandbox.

The increased efficiency of our system would also reduce our impact on the environment, and cut emissions caused by endless tie-ups and traffic jams. Few policy ideas have such broad-based, positive impacts for our economy, our budget and our environment, and I am thrilled these ideas are now part of our national discussion.

What do you think?

-Secretary Peters

May 2, 2008 Posted by | economy, Moonbats, trucking | , , , | Leave a comment

More ramblings and excuses from Mary Peters

U.S. Transportation Secretary Peters Says Cross Border Trucking is Essential for Colorado’s Booming Agricultural Exports

Efforts in Washington to end a program that permits U.S. truckers to deliver goods directly into Mexico would hurt Colorado’s farmers and ranchers, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters said today during a visit to a meat packing plant in Denver.

Secretary Peters said a new federal trucking demonstration project to allow U.S. companies and U.S. drivers to make deliveries in Mexico for the first time ever is making it easier and less costly for states like Colorado to export goods to the country’s third largest trading partner.  However, she warned that efforts by some groups to deny U.S. truckers access to Mexico would delay deliveries of agricultural products and needlessly raise the cost of shipments.

“We should be looking for every opportunity to open new markets for our drivers, to find new buyers for our products and encourage new consumers for our produce,” said Secretary Peters.  “People may pay a premium for 18-day dry aged steaks,   but no one is going to pay a premium for steaks aged on an 18 wheeler.”

Secretary Peters noted that Colorado alone exports over $356 million a year worth of products to Mexico, including meat, soy, wheat, onions and beans.  She added that a broad coalition of organizations representing many of the nation’s manufacturers, growers and ranchers, including the Denver-based Colorado Farm Bureau, support the Department’s Cross-Border Trucking Demonstration Project and are calling on Congress to allow it to continue.

“Our drivers and our workers don’t deserve a timeout from hope, success and prosperity,” the Secretary said.  “This is no time to let the politics of pessimism dim the promise of prosperity for hundreds of thousands of American drivers, growers and ranchers.”

Secretary Peters also said that safety is the Department’s number one priority and that a rigorous safety inspection plan and trained professionals are in place ensuring that every truck crossing the U.S. border as part of this project meets every U.S. safety standard.

Mary, Mary, quite contrary, Where do your trucks want to go?  Not to Mexico!!!!  Ignoring the obvious – that American truckers are not beating her door down to drive into Mexico – Peters gave us this diatribe today.  Perhaps she should concern herself with the real problems facing the American trucker – high fuel, high tolls… maybe THEN we’ll discuss what the ransom will be for a kidnapped trucker and his truck/trailer after the gringo crosses into Mexico…… 


March 26, 2008 Posted by | Border Security, Mexican Truck Pilot Program, NAFTA, trucking | , , , , , | Leave a comment