Inspectors to focus on driver requirements during 72-hour blitz

CVSA announced this week it has rescheduled International Roadcheck for Sept. 9-11

Truck drivers and fleets have just over three weeks to prepare for the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) annual 72-hour safety blitz, which has been rescheduled for Sept. 9-11.

In March, CVSA postponed the annual inspection blitz, which was slated for May, because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Some truck drivers choose to take a vacation during the annual three-day event as approximately 9,000 inspectors throughout North America will be conducting commercial motor vehicle and driver inspections at weigh and inspection stations or as part of roving mobile patrols.

Approximately 4 million commercial motor vehicle inspections are conducted every year throughout North America with approximately 17 trucks or buses inspected, on average, every minute during the 72-hour period, according to CVSA.

Each year, CVSA places special emphasis on a category of violations. This year, CVSA inspectors will focus on driver requirements during the inspection process. 

Last year, 1,179 drivers were placed out of service (OOS) due to hours-of-service violations during Roadcheck. That was 37.2% of the 3,173 drivers placed OOS. Additionally, 714 drivers (22.5%) were placed OOS for having the wrong class license and another 467 (14.7%) for having a false log.

CVSA focuses on driver requirements

CVSA decided to focus on driver requirements this year because most truck drivers have all switched over to electronic logging devices (ELDs), including those who were grandfathered for two years because they used automatic on-board recording devices (AOBRDs), according to Kerri Wirachowsky, director of roadside inspection of CVSA.

“The decision was made last fall to focus on driver requirements for this year’s Roadcheck, focusing more on ELD use and staying in the vein of the Operation Safe Driver event we had a few weeks ago that focused on driver behavior between commercial trucks and four-wheeler cars,” Wirachowsky told FreightWaves.

For the driver portion of the inspection, inspectors will collect and verify the driver’s documents, identify the motor carrier, examine the driver’s license, check record of duty status and review periodic inspection report(s). 

Inspector will check the Medical Examiner’s Certificate, Skill Performance Evaluation Certificate and the driver’s daily vehicle inspection report. 

Inspectors will also check drivers for seat belt usage, illness, fatigue, and apparent alcohol or drug possession or impairment, according to CVSA. Drivers found to be in violation of the rules may be placed out of service.

Mexico plans to participate in International Roadcheck

While Mexico hasn’t shared its inspection data for a few years, Wirachowsky said Mexican transportation officials “have indicated that they would like to participate in this year’s inspection blitz.

She said Mexico also plans to participate in CVSA’s Brake Safety Week, scheduled for Aug. 23-29.

“Officials have been in communication with us and we are doing everything we can do to involve them,” Wirachowsky said. “It’s been hit and miss over the previous years, but at this point, we are working with them, trying to translate all of our information for the data into Spanish so they can produce the data back to CVSA to be rolled up with Canada and the United States numbers.”

Safety blitz during COVID-19 

Due to COVID, some jurisdictions are not conducting  Level 1 inspections yet so most of the driver requirement issues can be done by doing a Level III or even a Level II inspection, Wirachowsky said. “

“It gives them a little bit more ability to be flexible based on what the state or the province or territory is in as far as work situations in regard to COVID,” she said. “It’s not standard across North America how each individual jurisdiction is coping or dealing with COVID-19.”

International Roadcheck, sponsored by CVSA, is conducted in partnership with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and with support from industry and transportation safety organizations, including the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, Transport Canada and the Secretariat of Communications and Transportation (Mexico).

Read more articles by FreightWaves’ Clarissa Hawes

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