The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance‘s (CVSA) International Roadcheck took place this year over May 16-18. International Roadcheck is an annual event designed to highlight the importance of safety on the roads for commercial vehicles. Safety inspectors carry out roadside inspections following a specific focus for the year. This year the focus was on Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABS), followed by cargo systems.
What is the CVSA?
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is a non-profit organization that joins federal, state, local, and even international safety and inspections officials in an effort to improve commercial motor vehicle safety and decrease accidents and injuries. The International Roadcheck is an intense and coordinated effort over three days in the commercial transport industry to bring awareness to drivers, owners and operators of the importance of inspections. The goal of the weekend is to reduce the number of accidents that arise from poorly maintained vehicle fleets or non-compliant driver practices.
What do Inspectors Look for During the International Roadcheck?
During a roadcheck, inspectors carry out the North American Standard Level I inspection, a 37-step procedure that includes the vehicle’s brakes, tires, suspension, and other essential systems. They also ensure each driver possesses a valid CDL and medical card. This year the inspectors focused on the ABS system itself, as well as checking to ensure the ABS warning light functioned correctly. Cargo systems were also a focal point this year, with inspectors ensuring cargo is properly secured. In 2022, International Road Check found that brake systems were the number one vehicle violation cited during the road check. Out of a total of 33,196 Level I inspections in the U.S., 7,912 commercial vehicles were issued out-of-service (OOS) citations. Of those, 24% were for the braking system, followed by tires at 19.4%.
Top Five Vehicle OOS Violations – U.S. 2022
|Category||# of OOS Vehicle Violations||% of OOS Vehicle Violations|
|Defective Service Brakes||2,142||12.9%|
Consequences of Non-Compliance
During the roadcheck, any commercial vehicle with violations will immediately be placed out-of-service. The vehicle, or the driver in case of a violation of license or medical card, cannot continue until the violation is corrected. Vehicles and drivers placed out-of-service can cause significant delays and financial losses for their companies. They can also result in fines for the companies. The CVSA inspections follow the North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria, which is available as a handbook. The guidelines are updated each year by April 1, in time for companies to review the new guidelines before International Roadcheck weekend.
What Can Commercial Vehicle Drivers and Companies Do to Prepare for the Roadcheck?
To ensure compliance and avoid penalties during the roadcheck, commercial vehicle drivers and companies should work together to implement a series of steps to ensure the vehicles and drivers are in compliance. These could include a regular vehicle maintenance schedule and driver training programs. These initiatives will help to reduce the possibility of potential violations being detected during a roadside inspection. Vehicles that pass the inspections are given a CVSA decal to display with the level of inspection (likely Level I in the case of International Roadcheck). It’s important to note a vehicle can pass inspection and still have a driver out of compliance.
Results of International Roadcheck 2023
The results of this year’s International Roadcheck will be released in the fall. Since the program’s inception in 1988, more than 1.8 million roadside inspections have taken place during International Roadcheck. The annual CVSA International Roadcheck serves as an important reminder of the critical role commercial vehicle safety and compliance play in reducing traffic accidents. By being aware of the processes involved in the roadcheck and implementing appropriate measures to ensure compliance, commercial vehicle drivers and companies can help promote safer roads for everyone.
To learn the results of International Roadcheck 2023, and stay up-to-date with news and issues around commercial vehicle inspections and International Roadcheck 2024, visit CVSA.org.