DETROIT, Mich.–The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance says roadside inspectors will be conducting inspections with a special emphasis on brakes Sept. 15-22, Brake Safety Week.
During this year’s CVSA Brake Safety Week, inspectors throughout North America will be checking for critical brake violations and putting some trucks and buses out of service.
Commercial motor vehicles with brake violations will be restricted from traveling until the violations are corrected. Vehicles that pass the inspection will be eligible to receive a CVSA decal.
This year, inspectors will be paying special attention to brake hoses and tubing as a reminder of their importance to vehicle mechanical fitness and safety.
“We all know how important a properly functioning brake system is to vehicle operation,” CVSA President Chief Jay Thompson with the Arkansas Highway Police said in a statement. “All components of the brake system must always be in proper operating condition. Brake systems and their parts and components must be routinely checked and carefully and consistently maintained to ensure the health and safety of the overall vehicle.”
Brake systems on commercial motor vehicles are made up of components that work together to slow and stop the vehicle, and brake hoses/tubing are essential for the proper operation of those systems. Brake hoses/tubing must be properly attached, undamaged, without leaks and appropriately flexible. They are an important part of the braking system, and when they fail they can cause problems for the rest of the braking system, CVSA said.
Out-of-adjustment brakes and brake-system violations represented 45% of all out-of-service vehicle violations issued during last year’s three-day International Roadcheck enforcement campaign. And, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s 2018 Pocket Guide to Large Truck and Bus Statistics, brake-related violations accounted for six of the top 20 most frequently cited vehicle violations in 2017.
CVSA said the goal of Brake Safety Week is to reduce the number of crashes caused or made more severe by faulty brake systems by conducting roadside inspections and identifying and removing unsafe commercial motor vehicles from roadways.
In addition to inspections and enforcement, the special effort is intended to educate drivers, motor carriers, mechanics, owner-operators and others on the importance of proper brake maintenance.
In the 14 jurisdictions using performance-based brake testers, vehicle braking efficiency will be measured using that tool to determine overall vehicle braking efficiency or the total brake force over the effective total gross weight. The minimum required braking efficiency for trucks or combinations with gross vehicle weight rating above 10,000 pounds is 43.5%, a requirement of U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations and the CVSA North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria.
Brake Safety Week is part of the Operation Airbrake Program, sponsored by CVSA in partnership with FMCSA and the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators.