OPP take more than half of trucks inspected off the road

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TORONTO, Ont. — After two days searching for unsafe rigs on Toronto-area highways, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) aren’t pleased with what they’re finding.

The OPP have been using new infrared technology to help them detect defects and safety violations on trucks, and the new tool is proving to be quite effective.

“They can tell through heat signals from different areas what parts of the truck might or might not be working,” explained Alton Plager of Termaquest, the company that supplies the thermal-imaging equipment to the OPP.

So far, 97 of 139 trucks inspected have been charged. In fact, 74 of those trucks were taken right off the road.

OPP Sgt. Cam Woolley says that he was shocked at some of the findings, noting one truck was carrying a full load while only half of its brakes were working.

In another case, a truck was pulled over that had been taken off the road 16 weeks ago. The owner simply slapped on new plates and told his suspended driver to keep driving.

“We didn’t use the infrared to decide whether to pull that truck over,” Woolley told local media. “We decided to because is was just plain ugly.”

The idea of the inspection blitz is to cut down on the number of accidents involving big rigs on Toronto-area highways, but Woolley says some fleets just aren’t getting the message.

“One guy we stopped yesterday had his entire load piled on one side of the truck,” says Woolley. “He said it was because the springs on the other side were broken. The body of the truck under the load was so heavy it was actually rubbing on the tires.”

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