The Biden administration announced vaccine requirements for truck drivers based in Canada and Mexico will end Friday, a move that could allow thousands of truckers to resume cross-border freight movements. 

The U.S. border vaccine mandate for foreign drivers began in January 2022. Canada ended its own border vaccination requirements in October.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced: “Beginning May 12, DHS will no longer require non-U.S. travelers entering the U.S. via land ports of entry and ferry terminals to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and provide related proof of vaccination upon request. DHS intends to rescind these Title 19 travel restrictions in alignment with the end of the Public Health Emergency.”

The Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA) supports ending the vaccine requirements and said in a statement that it “continues to work on several additional border barriers and areas where border policies remain misaligned with a coalition of trucking groups, including the American Trucking Associations (ATA), National Tank Truck Carriers and Truckload Carriers Association.”

The Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) said removing the mandate would allow thousands of unvaccinated truck drivers in Canada to reenter the cross-border supply chain.

“This is long overdue and something we have been pushing for,” PMTC told FreightWaves. “It will alleviate some concerns as roughly 10% to 15% of drivers on the Canadian side were still unvaccinated, and were unable to haul cross border.”

Over the past several months, the CTA, PMTC, ATA and other trucking associations have been calling on the Biden administration to end the vaccine requirements. The CTA said the mandate has barred thousands of unvaccinated truck drivers in Canada from entering the U.S. 

“The U.S. border restrictions mean that thousands of Canadian drivers are unable to support Canada-U.S. trade and goods movement,” Lak Shoan, director of CTA’s policy and industry awareness programs, told FreightWaves in February. “Taking a significant number of drivers out of the cross-border supply chain has led to tighter capacity and operational constraints for Canadian carriers.”

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