Every year the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) organizes truck inspectors from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico for an intensive enforcement effort called International Roadcheck. Commercial vehicle compliance agencies conducted this year’s Roadcheck from May 17-19. CVSA also holds other annual enforcement and inspection efforts – Brake Safety Week and Operation Safe Driver Week. Together, these events take a snapshot of current highway and truck safety conditions.
Each year Roadcheck focuses on one major vehicle system or area of driver compliance. In 2022, the vehicle system happened to be wheel ends – wheels, hubs, rims, and tires. Historically, violations involving those components account for about 25% of the vehicle out-of-service violations discovered during International Roadcheck. This year, tires ranked second and wheels seventh among vehicle out-of-service violations. Wheel ends as a category accounted for 22.8% of all vehicle out-of-service violations. Brakes were the number one vehicle out-of-service violation in 2022.
While Roadcheck has an annual focus, the inspections conducted are predominantly comprehensive Level I and Level V inspections, meaning all vehicle systems and often a review of driver operating credentials and requirements. So, a look back at Roadcheck results from recent year reveals trend lines, showing where commercial vehicle law enforcement and the trucking industry must improve highway safety together.
Top Three Vehicle Out-of-Service Violations
2019 Brake systems, 28% of vehicle out-of-service violations; tires/wheels, 19.3%; brake adjustment, 17.1%
2020 Brake systems, 25.8%; tires, 19%; lights, 13.5%
2021 Brake systems, 26.5%; tires, 18.6%; lights, 14.1%
2022 Brake systems, 25.2%; tires, 18.5%; defective service brakes, 12.7%
Top Three Driver Out-of-Service Violations
2019 Hours of service, 37.2% of driver out-of-service violations; wrong class license, 22.5%; false logs, 14.7%
2020 Hours of service, 34.7%; other (moving violations, cell phone use, etc.), 21.8%; wrong class license, 21.2%
2021 Hours of service, 41.5%; wrong class license, 19.5%; other, 16.6%
2022 False logs, 42.6%; wrong class license, 23.6%; hours of service, 8.1%
Lessons learned? When it comes to vehicle violations, Roadcheck demonstrates that the old mantra remains true: “BLT, brakes lights and tires.” The sad news is that regular pre- and post-trip inspections should catch most of these problems.
On the driver side, speeding has become a major on-road safety problem for professional drivers and motorists alike. When inspecting driver credentials and requirements, though, it’s all about following hours-of-service rules and keeping accurate records of duty status. False logs? In today’s electronic logging device world, that could mean driver failure to log on, showing “ghost” team drivers, or abusing the personal conveyance mode. It’s a growing problem.
The head-scratcher here is “wrong class license.” Management, dispatchers, and drivers should know which class of truck, with which endorsements, a driver is qualified to operate by their Commercial Driver’s License. Roadcheck shows that cutting CDL corners is a quick route to being out-of-service.
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