Peel Police Target Visibly Unsafe Trucks, Note Poor Brakes, Tires

by Michael Brown

MISSISSAUGA — A recent report from a Peel Police truck safety blitz found 76 vehicles failed the inspection.

In a follow-up interview, Today’s Trucking has learned that many of the trucks being pulled over were ones that appeared to be visibly unsafe and also included pickup trucks.

Constable and Road Safety Services liason for Peel Police Vito Pedano said his motto for the blitz was “if you’re a citizen and you see a truck going down the road and you ask yourself ‘is this safe to be on the road?’” — that’s the sort of truck they immediately pulled over.

The two day targeted inspection saw 190 vehicles pulled over with 76 vehicles failing the inspection, 36 vehicles having their plates removed, 199 provincial charges being laid, seven drivers who had their licenses suspended, and one vehicle seizure — that vehicle, however, was not a tractor trailer.

Officers followed a three-strike model: if you have three major defects — that require a mechanic and can’t be remedied on-site — you’ll lose your plates.

The event is labeled as a commercial vehicle safety blitz, but Pedano said that if they saw any vehicle that looked particularly suspicious, they brought it in for inspection. Pedano mentioned one particularly bad pickup truck, which he calls the “Flintstone” car that was missing the entire floor — you could see the road right through it.

In this case, the police were on the lookout for the bad guys. They’ve come away successful, with many of them now temporarily out of commission until proper safety standards are restored.

Pedano said that a majority of the defects had to do with brakes, suspension and tires. “People aren’t spending the money to do the repair,” he said. “[They’re] more concerned about oil changes than tires or brakes.” He also said that drivers of all vehicles need to be wary about “proper maintenance.”

“A lot [of people] just say they walk around the truck” as their safety inspection, but as Pedano points out, that isn’t the proper way to guarantee everyone’s safety.

The inspections involved 62 officers over two days, from June 27 to June 28, 2013, at the International Centre on Airport Road in Mississauga.

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