The Animal Transport Association (ATA) was able to meet with Clint Lancaster of the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers (NATM), who gave a presentation on “The Trailer Industry – Today and Tomorrow” as the Technical Director of the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers.

This is the first time that ATA has been able to attract a person of such stature that represents the over 400 manufacturers of light-to-medium duty trailers in the US and about 20 in Canada.

Their logo on a trailer is an excellent indicator that their members have undergone an audit checklist every two years of their “compliance verification program,” which used to be voluntary, but, as of 2011, is a mandatory portion of their program for members. Look for their logo on trailers that you are considering purchasing, and demand that manufacturers at least comply with these standards.

Current Issues and Efforts:

Lancaster delivered an excellent overview of the regulatory considerations that Transport Canada (TC) and the National Highway Transportation Safety Association are considering, based on efforts for C.A.F.E. carbon reduction and increasing gas mileage fuel economy for vehicles and towed trailer, as well as Canadian improvements in rear impact guards and tire/rim testing for trailers under 10,000 pounds (TC).

There are concerns that the new possible requirements for low friction tires and mandated aerodynamics will increase trailer costs, but Lancaster also mentioned that as