For drivers and carriers who have been on the roads for any number of years, the International Roadcheck will not come as a surprise. Every spring, an international organization of safety officials and industry experts come together to inspect drivers and vehicles on the road in an effort to increase safety. It’s been going on for decades: since International Roadcheck’s start in 1988, more than 1.8 million commercial motor vehicles have gone through inspection during the annual blitz.
If you’re not familiar with the roadside checks, here’s an overview and what you can expect during International Roadcheck 2022.
Who Is CVSA?
Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, or CVSA, is a nonprofit organization made up of commercial motor vehicle safety officials and industry professionals. Its mission is “to improve commercial motor vehicle safety and uniformity…by providing guidance and education to enforcement, industry, and policymakers.”
CVSA conducts safety and maintenance checks on thousands of vehicles every year, ensuring they are safe to be operating on the roadways. By establishing a consistent benchmark for safety, operators and owners of commercial vehicles can feel confident that their vehicles are safe on the roads. Evaluations of drivers are also completed.
What Is International Roadcheck?
Every year, commercial motor vehicle inspectors will ask commercial motor vehicles to pull over for driver and truck safety checks across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. It’s a whirlwind of inspections over just a few days, with goals of safer travel for everyone. In just over 72 hours, around fifteen trucks or buses are inspected every minute across three countries. Tens of thousands of vehicles and drivers will be checked to ensure safety and compliance with international and national laws for commercial vehicles.
But International Roadcheck isn’t just about blowing whistles; it’s also an opportunity to recognize and applaud the drivers, carriers, and inspectors who work hard every year to ensure roadway safety. So while many drivers are tempted to stay off the roads during the blitz, it’s a good reminder to check your vehicles and driving credentials to make sure you’re safe on the road.
2022 Focus Area(s) and Requirements
This year, the International Roadcheck will take place from May 17 to 19 all across Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. CMV inspectors will focus on wheel ends, including wheels, hubs, and tires. Nearly 25% of vehicle out-of-service violations found during International Roadchecks involve wheel-end components. Here’s what you can expect them to look for:
- Cracks or unseated locking rings, studs, or clamps
- Wheel rims that are bent, cracked, or broken (both inside and outside)
- Wheel fasteners that are loose, broken, missing, or damaged
- Lubricant leaks, missing caps, and/or plugs
- Inner wheel seal leaks, as well as leaks at the tire and valve stem
- Proper inflation of every tire
While wheel ends will be the primary focus area, vehicles will also be checked for any violations in areas such as:
- Brake systems
- Cargo securement
- Coupling devices
- Driveline and driveshaft components
- Steering mechanisms
- Exhaust and fuel systems
- Windshield wipers
Any non-compliant vehicle will be placed out of service and cannot legally operate until corrections have been made.
All vehicles that successfully pass their inspection will receive a CVSA decal.
For drivers, inspections will include:
- Driver operating credentials and requirements
- Valid CDL
- Current medical certificates
- Check record of duty status
- Review periodic inspection reports
- Proper seat belt usage
- Any signs of fatigue
- Signs of drug/alcohol abuse or impairment
International Roadcheck Results from the Past
In 2021 alone, more than 40,000 commercial motor vehicle inspections were conducted on roads throughout Canada, the U.S., and Mexico. Of those 40,000 plus, 6,710 commercial motor vehicles and 2,080 drivers were in violation of safety regulations and were removed from the road. That’s a 16.5% rate for vehicles and 5.3% for drivers. In the United States alone, 4,136 vehicles and 1,083 drivers were deemed unsafe. While that number seems high, it actually came down from 2020, when inspectors removed 20.9% of 50,000 vehicles. However, with numbers like these, it’s clear that the International Roadcheck is needed on our roads, and it’s also a great reminder to take care of vehicles and drivers every year.
Last year, the top five vehicle out-of-service violations were:
- Brake system (2,564 violations)
- Tires (1,804 violations)
- Lights (1,367 violations)
- Brake adjustment (1,203 violations)
- Cargo securement (1,192 violations)
Tips and Resources for Drivers and Fleets
There’s a lot you can do to be prepared for International Roadcheck this year to ensure your vehicle and driver can stay on the road.
- Drivers should always wear their seatbelts.
- A positive and professional attitude goes a long way during an inspection.
- Keep vehicles neat and clean.
- Make sure drivers are prepared with the following items:
- Valid CDL
- Federal Medical Examiner’s Certificate
- HOS Documentation
- Motor carrier registration
- Shipping papers/documentation
- Company’s insurance certificate
- Company’s Hazardous Materials Certificate (if applicable)
- Up to date permit book
- Charged and secure fire extinguisher
- Required emergency equipment
- Proof of annual inspection
Another resource to check out and keep in mind are Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) compliance and safety requirements can be found on CVSA’s website.
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