Last week, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance released the results from this year's three-day road inspection. The results show that trucking companies - including some drivers - may not be taking safety as seriously as they should.
More Than 1,400 Drivers Found In Violation Of Rules
Truck drivers in Texas and throughout the country are required to adhere to federal regulations when operating a tractor-trailer. These regulations dictate when, for how long and in what conditions they can drive. They exist to protect the driver and other motorists on the road.
Unfortunately, not everyone adheres to the rules.
The CVSA's inspection revealed that 3.4 percent (1,436) of drivers had committed serious violations. The most common was how many hours they had driven followed by falsifying log books.
Under federal law, truck drivers are limited to how many hours they can be on the road at a time. After they hit the limit, they are required to take a break to sleep. This rule ensures that drivers are alert and well-rested on the road. When drivers do not follow these rules, whether out of their own desire or because of pressure from trucking companies, they put others on the road at risk.
Maintenance Violations Take Trucks Off The Road
While a lot of focus is placed on drivers when it comes to truck safety, it is important to remember that trucking companies play a role in keeping motorists safe, too. Trucking companies are responsible for ensuring their vehicles are regularly inspected and well-maintained. It's not hard to imagine what could happen if brakes give out or a wheel comes loose.
Of the more than 62,700 inspections the CVSA conducted throughout the country, 9,080 trucks (more than 20 percent) were found to be unfit for the road.
The most common maintenance violations were related to the trucks' brakes. Inspectors also found violations related to wheels and tires, improperly secured cargo, and lighting.
Will Results Lead To Improvement?
Fortunately, the number of maintenance and driver violations was down from last year. Even still, the inspection results show there is room for improvement. Hopefully trucking companies and drivers will use this information to do everything they can to ensure their trucks and their drivers are fit for the road.