MILTON, Ont. - Seventy-eight per cent of vehicles inspected during the 2004 Roadcheck safety blitz passed inspections and were considered to have a high level of mechanical fitness, according to a report released by the Canadian Council of Motor T...
BLITZ: MTO officer Chris Davies speaks to the driver while MTO officer Brent Grice inspects the truck. Photo by Katy de Vries
MILTON, Ont. – Seventy-eight per cent of vehicles inspected during the 2004 Roadcheck safety blitz passed inspections and were considered to have a high level of mechanical fitness, according to a report released by the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA).
Over the 72-hour period, a total of 7,848 vehicles were inspected across Canada. While the 21.7 per cent out-of-service (OOS) rate for this year’s event was slightly higher than the 20 per cent figure recorded over the past two years, it still continues a positive overall downward trend in the OOS rate over the last 10 years.
A vehicle can be placed OOS for infractions as simple as rear signal lights not working to the more serious infractions of faulty steering or brakes. Many of the OOS problems can be fixed on the spot and the driver can be on his way. Some trucks, however, could take hours to fix or even be impounded.
Inspectors perform the most comprehensive Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) inspections on random heavy duty trucks that do not display a valid CVSA inspection decal.
“Roadcheck is a good survey to see how we are doing the other 362 days of the year,” said Chris Davies, transportation enforcement officer for the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario (MTO).
Truck News was at the Trafalgar Road inspection station along Hwy. 401 near Milton, Ont. to talk to inspectors and drivers during Roadcheck.
“We base our inspections on a regular circle check that drivers are supposed to perform before every trip,” said MTO transportation enforcement officer, Brent Grice. “We prefer drivers do their pre-trip inspections because something could happen by the time we get them off the road.”
Grice inspected a truck from Royal Tank Lines in Barrie, Ont. and placed the truck OOS for a very minor infraction – something that was easily fixed on the spot.
Allen, who has been driving for six months has already been through two random safety inspections and says there should be even more inspections conducted.
“If you’re going to run trucks, you want to run them right,” said Allen. “I think these types of blitzes are great, it shows care for the industry.”
The MTO issued invitations to industry stakeholders to participate in Roadcheck as an observer to see what is being done out on the road and at inspection stations.
Geoff Eaves in the maintenance department at TST Overland Express was at the inspection site in order to keep up to date with the problems the industry is finding.
“I’ve been here for several inspections now, and I feel that the inspectors are being very thorough and very fair,” said Eaves.
“I’m hoping to learn something new out here, and then review our own practices and see if there needs to be any changes made or any information to pass along to the department.”
Eaves said Roadcheck and other inspection initiatives are good for identifying the problem units on the highways and fair to the carriers investing in proper safety and equipment maintenance practices.
Roadcheck is an annual international event that takes place throughout Canada, Mexico and the U.S. and is co-ordinated by the CVSA. For more information, visit www.cvsa.org