We’re still in DC. Yesterday was a press conference, and the first day of meetings. I spoke at the press conference, then spent the majority of the afternoon in meetings with different agencies at the DOT (Department of Transportation). The slow movement toward change is excruciating. At this conference there were at least six new families. Families who have been through something similar to my family. It’s heartbreaking.
Every day I think I’ll go back to my hotel room and write a blog, describe it to all of you, perhaps get it off my heart. But I’ve been too tired. Physically and emotionally exhausted I haven’t been able to open the laptop much less begin to think about which stories to share. It’s no different this morning. My feet and head hurt already and I haven’t begun the day yet.
But I wanted you all to know we’re still here. I want the ATA to know that too.
We are at a crossroads in safety. This THURSDAY, day after tomorrow, a House committee (The T&I committee which stands for Transportation and Infrastructure) will be ‘marking up’ the Reauthorization Bill. The bill has several horrible provisions, among them letting teenagers drive interstate, hiding critical crash data from the public, continuing the rollback of the mandatory two nights of sleep after reaching certain hours of driving, and we think the 33 foot double trailers could be added to the bill at the last moment.
Pick whichever of these issues resonates with you and call your Congressperson in the House, tell the transportation legislative aide that you oppose these anti-safety provisions in the bill being marked up Thursday. Or just tell them you oppose ALL the anti-truck safety provisions that are in the Reauthorization Bill. They’ll know what you mean.
We have to get loud really fast. The Senate has already passed their version of the bill. The House bill was issued on Friday, will be marked up (which means worked on) this Thursday. We don’t know when the vote in the House will be. But it will be soon.
I’ll update you tonight when I get back from my meetings. We secured over 100 meetings in these two days. We’re busy. We’re tired. But we are not discouraged and we are not going away.
I cried when I saw dad’s picture in a DOT elevator lobby among the pictures of other people who have died in truck related crashes. Please, let’s work together so some other family doesn’t have to cry.