The latest in a growing list of new US security measures that have surfaced recently under the Homeland Security Bill and the Trade Act would harm just-in-time inventory systems, as well as trade between Canada and the United States, said David Bradley, chief executive officer, Canadian Trucking Alliance.
Last week, security officials announced a proposed system requiring the electronic submission of cargo data to the US Customs Service four hours before a truck is loaded in Canada for shipment to the United States, and 24 hours prior to loading a truck in the US destined for Canada, he said.
"Carriers and shippers on both sides of the border are united in the view that these rules if implemented, would cause mayhem within the North American supply chain and inventory management systems," Bradley said. "The proposed pre-notification time frames are unthinkable under just-in-time inventory systems."
The technology required to implement the proposed system would be enormously expensive for all carriers, and would be prohibitive for many smaller carriers, he said. Bradley is concerned that the pre-notification rules, along with other entry/exit measures announced in recent weeks, could scupper the gains made to date under the 30 Point Smart Border Plan.
"It’s been a bad month," he said. "We’ve seen the enactment of a new US Safe Explosives Act that will, unless something happens this week, ban Canadian drivers from shipping explosives into the US as of January 24. The Transportation Security Administration is proposing to introduce a Transportation Workers Identity Card that may or may not be available to Canadians. And, there are the pending visa requirements for Canadian drivers from certain commonwealth countries."
"We are fast reaching the point where the world’s largest trading partnership is being put in serious jeopardy," said Bradley.