WASHINGTON — On a voice vote Tuesday, the Senate confirmed the nomination of Raymond Martinez to become administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
The agency has been without an administrator since the resignation of Scott Darling III at the conclusion of the Obama administration.
President Donald J. Trump sent Martinez’ nomination to the Senate September 28.
Martinez appeared before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee in late October.
The panel unanimously approved the nomination about one month later and sent the nomination to the full Senate.
Appearing before the panel, Martinez said safety, the agency’s IT infrastructure and expanding relationships with transportation safety partners would be his three top priorities.
Safety must remain the agency’s top priority, Martinez said in answer to questions posed by the committee and which all nominees must answer in writing.
“Emerging technologies like highly automated or self-driving vehicles, especially large trucks, provide potential for great improvement in highway safety as well as operational efficiencies for industry stakeholders,” Martinez wrote. “However, these same emerging technologies and related safety concerns also pose challenges to the FMCSA regulatory and oversight role in its safety mission. The FMCSA must ensure appropriate, balanced regulation and seamless integration of any new and developing technologies into the existing highway safety landscape without hindering innovation.”
The FMCSA is increasingly dependent on its IT infrastructure and the use of outside vendors to accomplish its core safety mission, Martinez wrote, adding that safeguarding this infrastructure by employing stringent management and strong risk mitigation would help to endure the security, stability and sustainability of its data management and communications capability.
Entities with whom the FMCSA needed to expand and enhance its relationships include those in government as well as the private sector.
“Highway traffic safety, especially in relation to the truck and motorcoach sectors, requires extensive and continued cooperation between all of these entities, Martinez stated in his answers. “Effective regulation and continued improvement of safety in this area can only be achieved by leveraging current, valid and verifiable data from all of these sources in order to identify areas of risk and focus enforcement efforts more effectively on those identified areas.”
Martinez currently serves as chairman and chief administrator of the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission where he is asked by both the governor and the legislature to assess the impact of proposed legislation that is in any way related to the commission.