On August 22, the 30th annual International Roadcheck event’s results were finally released by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) on their official website.
This event was previously conducted by the CVSA from June 6 to June 8, 2017, throughout North America.
In comparison to last year’s results, this year’s event recorded a significant growth in the total number of truck drivers and commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) that were placed out-of-service because of critical violations.
According to the CVSA, a total of 62,013 Level I-III inspections occurred throughout the event — 54,300 happened in the United States, while 7,713 were conducted in Canada.
In this article, we give you a 30,000-foot perspective of this year’s International Roadcheck. Moreover, we will also share the results of the CVSA International Roadcheck 2017 and some insights into the numbers that were recorded during the inspection event.
But before we jump into the results of the CVSA International Roadcheck 2017, let’s first briefly discuss what the CVSA International Roadcheck program is as well as the different levels of roadside inspections.
The CVSA International Roadcheck is the biggest enforcement initiative in the world that inspects commercial motor vehicles and drivers to increase road safety and prevent crashes and accidents. It’s a 3-day annual event that lasts for 72 consecutive hours.
Inspections usually occur at roving patrol locations, inspection sites, and weigh stations across the continent with about 15 commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) being inspected each minute.
With this event, various compliance, educational, and enforcement initiatives that target different elements of carrier, driver, and vehicle safety are conducted by CVSA-certified inspectors every year.
The president of the CVSA, Julius Debuschewitz, expounded upon the alliance’s mission on conducting these annual initiatives when he said:
“…the goal of International Roadcheck was to conduct inspections to identify and remove unsafe commercial motor vehicles and/or drivers from our roadways. Thirty years and 1.5 million inspections later, the International Roadcheck enforcement initiative is still going strong, thanks to the more than 13,000 inspectors who work hard every day to reduce the number of crashes, injuries and fatalities on our roadways.”
CVSA-certified inspectors can utilize up to eight different levels of roadside inspections that can be conducted on either commercial motor vehicles, operators, or both. Among the eight available levels of inspection, the Level I inspection is the most in-depth and comprehensive of all.
The statistics gathered from this year’s event focused mainly on the first three inspection levels. However, other inspection levels could have also occurred throughout the three-day event.
Vehicles that pass eligible CVSA roadside inspections would receive a “Pass Inspection” CVSA decal by safety inspectors.
This decal serves as a visual indicator that there were no grave violations detected by the safety inspector and that the driver and/or vehicle have successfully passed the roadside inspection.
Official CVSA inspection decals would only be given to vehicles and truck drivers who pass the North American Standard (NAS) Level I, V, or VI inspections.
Here is a brief summary of all eight inspection levels that are certified by the CVSA:
Level I inspections are 37-step-long procedures that are conducted by the CVSA inspector, and that involves a thorough examination of both the CMV and the driver.
Here are some of the categories for driver violations included in the inspection:
Alternatively, following are some of the inspection categories that were included for vehicle violations:
Level II inspections are walk-around examinations where the safety officer examines items that are related to the vehicle and driver violation categories without the need to go under the commercial motor vehicle (physically).
Level III inspections are driver-only examinations that make use of categories that are only limited to that of driver credentials and safety performance.
Level IV inspections are generally one-time examinations of a specific violation item or category that the CVSA conducts in order to support one of their studies and/or to verify or refute a suspected trend.
Level V inspections are vehicle-only inspections that utilize the vehicle-violation inspection categories mentioned in the Level I inspection and which can be performed at any given location without requiring the presence of the CMV driver around.
Level VI inspections are HRCQ (Highway Route Controlled Quantities) examinations which involve safety officials checking to see if the CMV complies with road regulations on how to handle and transport radioactive materials and transuranic wastes properly.
Level VII inspections are special jurisdictionally mandated examinations that are usually ordered by a particular state or region and that generally do not adhere to the requirements of other inspection levels.
These kinds of inspections are often required for intrastate/intra-provincial operations (e.g., hotel courtesy shuttles, school buses, etc.) and can also be conducted by designated government employees and jurisdiction-approved contractors asides from CVSA officials.
Level VIII inspections are NAS electronic examinations where vehicle and driver inspections are conducted electronically and wirelessly while the CMV is still in motion.
Electronic inspections often involve data exchanges and, generally, do not require safety officers to directly interact with the vehicle’s driver to be able to conduct the examination.
For the past few years, the CVSA has been giving special emphasis on a yearly-themed violation category in each Roadcheck event as a means of reminding drivers of its importance.
This year’s themed category falls under the area of cargo securement.
According to the CVSA, 15.7% of all the assessed vehicle violations in this year’s International Roadcheck composed of cargo securement violations, which eventually resulted in the CMVs given the out-of-service status.
During Roadcheck 2017, the CVSA tallied a total number of 3,282 violation instances that were related to cargo securement.
The following are the top five cargo securement violations and their corresponding frequencies:
With the event catering a total of 40,944 Level I inspections, the most common criteria on whether a driver and/or a vehicle has passed the inspection is the CVSA’s NAS out-of-service criteria.
Drivers or vehicles that are observed to have critical violations during these Level I inspections are automatically rendered by the safety officer as out-of-service, while those who successfully completed the rigorous checkup would be given CVSA decals for their effort in safety compliance.
This out-of-service status leaves motor vehicles inoperable unless their critical condition defects and/or the qualifications of the vehicle’s driver are corrected.
The CVSA also tallied a total number of 12,787 NAS Level II Walk-Around Inspections and 8,282 NAS Level III Driver-Only Inspections conducted by safety officers all over the North American region.
All three levels of inspection that occurred in this year’s International Roadcheck led to 4.7% of all inspected drivers and 19.4% of all inspected vehicles being placed out-of-service.
Some of the statistics that were obtained by the CVSA regarding driver-related violations include the following:
Here are some results from the event that pertain to vehicle-related violations:
Most of the top-ranking violations that were identified by the CVSA during this year’s International Roadcheck could have been avoided if the drivers equipped their vehicles with ELDs (Electronic logging device).
In fact, a lot of the leading violations that placed drivers and vehicles out-of-service during this year’s event — violations that include braking and tire safety deficiencies, HOS violations, and falsified logbooks — could have been prevented with the features that ELDs offer.
ELDs that come with “vehicle diagnostics” feature could have potentially prevented over 7,000 vehicles from being assessed with brake violations and placed out-of-service.
This vehicle diagnostics feature detects any problems and deficiencies that arise from vehicles (such as tire pressure problems and braking issues) and automatically sends a warning notification via the ELD’s online dashboard to the fleet manager for rectification.
Also, ELDs are tamper-resistant and come with a unique warning notification feature that alerts operators when their duty hours are nearing the HOS time limit. The tamper resistance prevents users from falsifying their RODS logs and the warning features would minimize drivers from going over their regulated duty hours, therefore reducing the number of Hours of Service violations.
ELDs also protect carriers from compliance violations by notifying fleet managers via the online dashboard whenever drivers would exceed their HOS limits.
These managers could then take action and coach high-risk drivers into observing the mandated regulations to safeguard the business from receiving hefty fines due to noncompliance.
The FMCSA expects future International Roadcheck events to have a significantly lower number of drivers and vehicles placed out-of-service because of the upcoming implementation deadline of the ELD mandate.
Because the ELD rule requires vehicles to be equipped with ELDs by December 2017, the FMCSA predicts that the HOS infractions would greatly decrease because of how these devices are designed to combat HOS violations.
If you are still manually logging your hours through paper RODS to comply with the Hours of Service rules, then you can use electronic logging devices to transition and adhere to the upcoming ELD rule.
Additionally, you can also click on the following link to use our free ELD ROI calculator to help you see how much your fleets could potentially save by using ELDs.