Thousands of semi-tractor trailers are inspected each year in Connecticut and around the country during the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s annual International Roadcheck safety blitz. When trucks are subjected to North American Standard Level I, II, III, IV or V inspections during the 72-hour initiative, they are either issued with CVSA decals and allowed to continue on their journeys or ordered out of service until safety violations have been addressed. In 2023, 11,270 commercial vehicles and 3,256 commercial vehicle drivers were ordered off the road during International Roadcheck.
Inspections and safety violations
More than 59,000 tractor-trailers were inspected during International Roadcheck, which began on May 16 and ended on May 18. These inspections led to the discovery of 116,669 safety violations and 17,479 out-of-service violations. The violations that led to trucks being ordered off the road most often included brake system defects, worn or damaged tires, improperly secured cargo and inoperative lights.
Commercial vehicle drivers
In addition to examining tractor-trailer safety systems, CVSA inspectors check hours of service records, commercial driver’s licenses, cargo logs and medical cards during International Roadcheck. This is because fatigued, sick or unqualified truck drivers are far more likely to be involved in motor vehicle accidents. Of the 5,280 driver out-of-service violations discovered during the safety initiative, 2,169 were hours of service violations and 1,392 were false log violations.
A danger to other road users
A fully laden tractor-trailer can weigh up to 80,000 pounds. The results of the International Roadcheck safety initiative suggest that a worryingly large number of these vehicles are poorly maintained and a danger to other road users. Road safety would be improved if safety initiatives like International Roadcheck were held more often and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations were enforced more strictly.