WASHINGTON - TRALA joined industry partners and government agencies participating in the North American Border Security Meeting conference hosted by TRALA-member company Ryder System, Inc. in Novi, Mich.  The conference, which took place at Ryder's Operations Management Center, featured presentations by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the Canada Border Services Agency, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and the US Chamber of Commerce.

TRALA was referenced by Ryder as a lead industry partner in the effort to find ways to increase security but not sacrifice the ability of companies to travel or move goods between Canada and Mexico.  TRALA is currently developing new security reference documents that will assist member companies and law enforcement if a threat situation involving the truck renting or leasing industry occurs.

During the conference, DHS officials discussed emerging threats to our borders and the impact that they have on the movement of freight between the U.S., Canada and Mexico.  An emphasis was placed on how terrorists could potentially try to cross the border or have materials moved across the border by using past techniques as well as new trends that government officials had seen over the past two years.  DHS stressed that an attack against the US would likely affect the entire supply chain and thus our economy as a whole.

CBP representatives gave an update on the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT), a joint government-business program that is supported by CBP.  The CBP officials discussed security breaches and specific cases that have led to a better understanding of how smugglers or a potential terrorist might try to evade the current system of border protection.

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) provided an update on a government initiative, called the Canada Partners in Protection, which enlists private industry to help with border supply chain security.  The agency also presented an update on the eManifeset Program, a Canadian initiative designed to get the correct information in time to enhance the ability of the CBSA to identify possible threats to Canada while helping to facilitate the movement of low-risk freight shipments across the border.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police discussed specific threats to the Canadian infrastructure and security and crime trends throughout their country.  There were multiple U.S. state security officials in attendance that discussed how these issues relate to cross-border freight movement.

Lastly, the US Chamber of Commerce gave a presentation on how the private sector and governments can find the balance between security and trade facilitation.

TRALA continues to be very active in many areas of security.  If you would like to learn more about the role TRALA is playing in this arena or if you have questions regarding this recent conference, please contact Jake Jacoby at jjacoby@trala.org or by calling (703) 299-9120.