Monday, January 11, 2010

Letter to the Liberal Caucus Asking For Help in Obtaining a 21 passenger MFAV Test Vehicle

Subject : FW: Letter to Liberal Caucus from Bathurst Mothers, Please Help Us Get a 21Passenger MFAV for Tire Tests

Dear Liberal Caucus members:

We are writing to ask for your help in obtaining a 21 passenger Multi Function Activity Vehicle from the Department of Education's fleet of MFAVs. The vehicle will be used in scientific testing of tire configurations at Continental Tires state of the art testing facility in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan during the week of February 15 or February 22, 2010.

New Brunswick Minister of Education Rolande HacheContinental Tire is one of the world's largest tire manufacturers and it has offered to do free testing of the tires on 21 passenger MFAVs similar to the one used by Bathurst High School. Continental has an excellent safety record and there has never been an accident at its testing

We have tried to rent a 21 passenger MFAV but none of the rental companies have the specific MFAV we require and / or their company policy will now allow us to use their MFAV's for testing. We have approached the manufacturers of these MFAVs but they too do not have the specific MFAV that we require. We have also written a Letter to the Editor which has been reprinted across Canada and the United States but so far we have not received any response.

Yesterday, John Mahler, veteran automotive journalist with the Toronto Star's, printed an open letter to Premier Shawn Graham in asking him to loan a test vehicle for testing at Continental Tire.

Denis Landry, New Brunswick Minister of Transportation
We have a very narrow window of opportunity to carry out these free scientific tests at Continental's facilities in Michigan. We are willing to pay for the gas, the extra insurance and will even hire a Class 2 driver to drive the vehicle from New Brunswick to Michigan and back. We are paying our own expenses to fly to Michigan separately so that we may be present for the testing. If the province of New Brunswick had to pay for these tests, it would cost an estimated $250,000, so we cannot understand why the Premier and the Ministers of Education and Transportation
could turn down our request, especially when Transport Canada has stated that mixed tires on these 21 passenger MFAVs are not safe.

We know that this is an unusual request but we have reached the end of our options and feel that you may be able to convince the Premier, the Minister of Education and the Minister of Transportation to loan us a test vehicle.

If you have any questions whatsoever about this request, please feel free to contact us and we can give you the contact names at Continental Tires where you can find out more about the planned tests and its facilities in Michigan.

Whatever you do, please do not ignore this plea. This week is the second anniversary of the death of our boys and we will be speaking to the radio, television and print media all across Canada. We would love to be able to say that our government has done the right thing by agreeing to loan a test vehicle to Continental for the February tests.

Yours sincerely,

Isabelle Hains
Ana Acevedo
Marcella Kelly

Contact Isabelle Hains @ 506-546-6370
Contact Marcella Kelly @ 506-548-4973