WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has issued a final rule to establish pass/fail criteria for use with performance-based brake testers (PBBT).
The devices, which measure the braking performance of commercial motor vehicles, will soon be governed by a regulation allowing motor carriers and state and local enforcement officials to use PBBTs to determine compliance with the existing brake performance requirements.
A PBBT can assess a vehicle’s braking capability through a quantitative measure of individual wheel brake forces or overall vehicle brake performance in a controlled test.
The rule, which will become effective Feb. 5, 2003, addresses these specific types of PBBTs: roller dynamometer, breakaway torque tester and flat-plate tester.
Only those PBBTs meeting certain functional specifications that are developed by FMCSA can be used to enforce the federal safety regulations.
Several CVSA member jurisdictions participated in the PBBT pilot program that led to this rulemaking. Out of service criteria will need to be developed in order for jurisdictions to use this equipment in enforcing the FMCSRs. This will be discussed during the Vehicle Committee Meeting in Boston.
There are several other items that are critical to the implementation of these devices — including inspector training — CVSA members and staff are assisting FMCSA, equipment manufacturers and other stakeholders in these endeavors.
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