Roadside inspection standards updated

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GREENBELT, Md. – The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has updated a series of roadside inspection standards, including rules for those using electronic logging devices (ELDs), and the procedures for inspecting motor coach monocoque frames and suspensions.

The changes were approved during a recent workshop in Portland, Ore.

Under the updates, a driver with a malfunctioning ELD that no longer accurately records hours of service must use a paper Record of Duty Status (RODS). Those who can’t produce hours of service records using options described in a related inspection bulletin, but have a functioning device, will be placed out of service.

The main methods for verifying hours of service with an ELD will involve electronic data transfers using telematics – by web or email – or through a local connection like USB and Bluetooth. If the data transfers don’t work, officers are expected to use a device’s display or printout.

Drivers will be responsible for initiating eRODS file transfers when asked. Safety officials will provide the required key phrase or code to be entered into the comment field.

Inspectors will determine if an ELD is registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration by referencing the published list of self-certified devices, or retrieving ELD data during a file transfer.


Inspections of motor coach monocoque frames and suspensions will involve looking for anything longer than a 1.5-inch crack in a frame siderail web directed toward the bottom flange; any crack extending from the frame siderail web around the radius and into the bottom flange; or anything more than a one-inch crack in the siderail bottom flange.

Any tubing or structure that’s separating or cracking on more than two sides of a tube will be noted and taken out of service.

Hazardous materials

While special training is required to inspect actual loads of hazardous materials or dangerous goods, anyone conducting a Level 3 inspection is able to check if a driver is properly licensed to haul the load, and also review bills of lading and placards.

Gone is a requirement for such shipping papers to be within a belted driver’s immediate reach, visible to a person entering the vehicle, or in a holder on the inside of the driver’s door.

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John G. Smith is the editorial director of Newcom Media's trucking and supply chain publications -- including Today's Trucking,, TruckTech, Transport Routier, and Road Today. The award-winning journalist has covered the trucking industry since 1995.

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