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CVSA’s Brake Week in September pulled about 5,000 vehicles off the road

  Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s brake week program in September pulled about one in seven trucks it inspected off the road for failed inspections, the group said in releasing the results of its initiative.

Brake Safety Week took place September 16-22 in the U.S. and Canada. It was conducted by personnel in 57 separate jurisdictions, the CVSA said in releasing its data. It conducted just over 35,000 inspections and found violations severe enough in just under 5,000 trucks—4,955 to be exact—that it took them out of service, the group said.

This is not the first time that a CVSA “week” has encountered issues with brakes. During Roadcheck Week in June 2018, law enforcement personnel over the three-day period listed brake violations as being on the top of the list. “And according to the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) data, out of 8 million inspections, there were 1,045,335 brake-related violations in federal fiscal 2018, with a portion of those accounting for seven of the top 20 vehicle violations,” CVSA said in a summary of the results of Brake Check Week.

Focusing in on antilock braking systems, CVSA said the trucks and trailers with hydraulic braking had only 4.4% ABS violations. But of the larger group of air-braked units, 8.3% had ABS violations and 12.5% of trailers had ABS violations. Buses only had 2% violations. “ABS violations were counted when the malfunction lamp did not illuminate or stayed on, indicating an issue of some kind,” the CVSA said.

Brake Safety Week is not sprung on the truck community without warning. By doing so, CVSA said, “it gives motor carriers and drivers ample opportunity to ensure their vehicles are proactively checked and properly maintained and any issues found are corrected. Everyone wants the vehicles that are inspected to pass inspection.”

CVSA also says the goal of Brake Safety Week is education—”an opportunity for law enforcement personnel to educate drivers and motor carriers on the inspection procedure with a focus on the vehicle’s mechanical components, especially the brake systems”—and action—”If a vehicle has brake-related critical inspection items, it’s law enforcement’s duty and responsibility to place that vehicle out of service, safeguarding the public.”

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John Kingston

John has an almost 40-year career covering commodities, most of the time at S&P Global Platts. He created the Dated Brent benchmark, now the world’s most important crude oil marker. He was Director of Oil, Director of News, the editor in chief of Platts Oilgram News and the “talking head” for Platts on numerous media outlets, including CNBC, Fox Business and Canada’s BNN. He covered metals before joining Platts and then spent a year running Platts’ metals business as well. He was awarded the International Association of Energy Economics Award for Excellence in Written Journalism in 2015. In 2010, he won two Corporate Achievement Awards from McGraw-Hill, an extremely rare accomplishment, one for steering coverage of the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster and the other for the launch of a public affairs television show, Platts Energy Week.