Roadcheck 2012’s driver, vehicle out-of-service rates near record low

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WASHINGTON, D.C. — The 25th annual Roadcheck safety blitz, conducted by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) in June, saw a record number of truck and bus inspections and the second-lowest vehicle and driver out-of-service rates for Level 1 inspections in the event’s history.

Of the record 74,072 truck and bus inspections, 48,815 were North American Standard Level 1 inspections – the most comprehensive roadside inspection – of which 22.4% of vehicles and 3.9% of drivers were placed out of service.

The overall out-of-service rates for the entire event – which includes all inspection levels – were 20.9% for vehicles and 4.6% for drivers, both representing an increase from last year’s numbers.

Despite the positive trend on the Level 1s, the numbers indicate that one in five vehicles selected for inspection was found with a violation serious enough to be considered an imminent safety hazard. “These mixed results indicate that, while the attention paid by industry to maintenance and regulatory compliance generally is improving, more needs to be done by industry and enforcement alike,” officials said in a release.
Organizers said Roadcheck 2012 emphasized a focus on braking systems and Hours-of-Service, the top ranking violation categories for vehicles and drivers, respectively. Despite the increased focus on these areas, the proportions of brake-related and Hours-of-Service-related violations relative to all out-of-service violations declined slightly. In addition, seatbelt violations issued totalled 848, the fewest recorded since 2007.

During the event, CVSA estimates that over 9,500 CVSA and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration inspectors participated at approximately 2,500 locations across North America. As well, 10 US states and two Canadian provinces engaged part of their enforcement activities to focus on vehicles serving oil field and natural gas production sites, where increases in commercial truck traffic have raised significant safety concerns.
“Roadcheck continues to shine a spotlight on the critical importance of the roadside inspection program across North America and how vital it is to commercial vehicle safety and our march toward zero deaths on our roadways. I appreciate the continued focus by both enforcement and industry towards ensuring that it remains a top priority,” said CVSA president David Palmer, an assistant chief with the Texas Department of Public Safety.
“This is a clear indication that enforcement and industry’s efforts during Roadcheck are having a positive impact,” said CVSA’s executive director Stephen A. Keppler. “This goes to show that even in these difficult budgetary times for states, provinces and local agencies that each and every roadside inspection is important and makes a difference.”

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