Texas Inspections Reveal Widespread Problems
Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) removed more than two-fifths of commercial vehicles during inspections conducted as part of the safety initiative called Roadcheck 2015. During the three-day event in June, the TX DPS Commercial Vehicle Enforcement troopers worked with specially trained Highway Patrol troopers and civilian inspectors to examine tractor-trailers, buses and other commercial vehicles.
Shockingly, Roadcheck inspectors discovered that 1,710 of the 7,865 commercial vehicles inspected had such serious violations that they were taken out of service until repairs could be made, meaning that at least 22% of these large vehicles had dangerous safety problems. Defective brakes and lighting were the most common issues that resulted in out-of-service determinations.
Huge Number of Drivers Also Deemed Unsafe
Drivers also were inspected under the Roadcheck campaign. The DPS issued 1,947 citations and 21,312 warnings and took 212 drivers out of service. Many of the drivers did not have the correct type of license to operate the vehicle they were driving. Also many drivers had violated hours of service laws (HOS) regarding keeping accurate logs of their duty and drive times and driving more than the maximum allowable number of hours.
North America-Wide Safety Inspections
18-wheelers, buses and other commercial vehicles typically travel great distances from other states and across borders to haul goods and passengers throughout North America. Roadcheck is an interstate and international approach to transportation safety. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance‘s (CVSA) organizes Roadcheck with numerous local, state and federal agencies in the United States and with Canadian and Mexican authorities.
CVSA has orchestrated the program every year since 1988 and generally highlights one safety category while inspecting for all types of violations. This year the program emphasized compliance with safe loading regulations.
The 37-point North American Standard Level I Inspection, which is the most stringent level of examination, covers both the driver and her or his vehicle. Inspectors look for the driver’s seat belt use and for signs of alcohol or drug use. They also review the driver’s documents, including driver’s license, endorsements, medical card and hours of service logs.
The vehicle inspection involves examination of a long checklist of important safety matters, such as cargo loading and security, braking system, coupling devices, drive line, exhaust system, frame, fuel system, lights, steering mechanism, suspension and tires.
Inspections Reflects High Rate of Noncompliance
These once per year inspection indicates a very big problem. More violations of safety regulations translate into greater risk of an accident.
Berenson Injury Law Firm has helped clients injured by noncompliant truckers and trucking companies for the past 35 years. Often these accidents are caused by lax safety compliance by the truck corporations and their drivers. If you have been injured by a tractor-trailer, bus or other commercial vehicle, call our Dallas-Fort Worth law firm for a free case evaluation. We will fight to get you the compensation you deserve.