Is your equipment ready for CVSA's annual enforcement blitz?

Roadcheck 2013 takes place this June 4 to 6.

Roadcheck is the largest targeted enforcement program on commercial vehicles in the world, with approximately 14 trucks or buses being inspected, on average, every minute from Canada to Mexico, during a 72-hour period in early June.

An annual event, this year's Roadcheck, themed is set for June 4 to 6. That is when the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) and its members will be aggressively enforcing compliance with commercial vehicle safety regulations, removing those high-risk carriers from the roads to ensure the public's safety.

The theme for Roadcheck 2103 is Enhancing Truck and Bus Safety Throughout North America, and there will be an additional focus on motorcoach inspections and overall traffic enforcement.

The CVSA is an international not-for-profit organization comprised of local, state, provincial, territorial and federal motor carrier safety officials and industry representatives from the United States, Canada and Mexico. Its mission is to promote commercial motor vehicle safety and security by providing leadership to enforcement, industry and policy makers.

During last year's Roadcheck, 74,072 inspections were conducted. Of the vehicles inspected, 20.9 percent were placed out of service for mechanical problems and 4.6 percent of the drivers inspected were placed out of service.

Since its inception in 1988, the roadside inspections conducted during Roadcheck have numbered more than 1 million, resulting in more than 220 lives saved and 4,045 injuries avoided, says CVSA.

The inspections have also provided for the distribution of countless pieces of educational literature and safety events to educate industry and the general public about the importance of safe commercial vehicle operations and the roadside inspection program.

Roadcheck is one of a series of activities that occur year round whereby CVSA-certified inspectors conduct compliance, enforcement and educational initiatives targeted at various elements of motor carrier, vehicle, driver and cargo safety and security.

What inspectors focus upon

CVSA says officials performing roadside inspections during Roadcheck 2013 will be focusing on nine keys areas. Here are some of the main things inspectors will be examining.

1. Brakes

  • Check for missing, non-functioning, loose, contaminated or cracked parts on the brake system.
  • Check for "S" cam flip-over.
  • Be alert for audible air leaks around brake components and lines.
  • Check that the slack adjusters are the same length (from center of "S" cam to center of clevis pin), and that the air chambers on each axle are the same size.
  • Check brake adjustment.
  • Ensure the air system maintains air pressure between 90 and 100 psi.
  • Measure pushrod travel.
  • Inspect required brake system warning devices, such as ABS malfunction lamps and low air pressure warning devices.
  • Inspect tractor protection system, including the bleedback system on the trailer.

2. Coupling Devices

  • Check the safety devices (chains/wire rope) for sufficient number, missing components, improper repairs and devices that are incapable of secure attachment.
  • On the lower fifth wheel, check for unsecured mounting to the frame or any missing or damaged parts or any visible space between the upper and lower fifth wheel plates. Verify that the locking jaws are around the shank and not the head of the kingpin. Also make sure that the release lever is seated properly and that the safety latch is engaged.
  • Check the upper fifth wheel for any damage to the weight bearing plate and its supports, such as cracks, loose or missing bolts on the trailer.
  • On the sliding fifth wheel, check for proper engagement of locking mechanism (teeth fully engaged on rail). Also check for worn or missing parts and ensure that the position does not allow the tractor frame rails to contact the landing gear during turns.
  • Check for damaged or missing fore and aft stops.

3. Fuel & Exhaust Systems

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