June’s Roadcheck Enforcement Breakdown
“This here’s the Rubber Duck.” In 1975, some forty-two years ago, the song “Convoy” hit the airwaves and became a number one hit song. It told the story of some “outlaw” truckers who tore up their “swindle sheets” dumping them on the scales as they bypassed weigh stations, and roared through state police and National Guard roadblocks at 98MPH! All this done while they talked to each other on their CB radios.
A lot has changed since then. Today’s long haul driver is a professional businessman, or businesswoman. Highway safety is a very important part of this professionalism. It was this emphasis on highway safety that lead to the creation of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance. The CVSA is an association of North American governmental jurisdictions dedicated to enforcement of uniform safety inspections. Founded in 1980, the CVSA covers the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Every year they conduct an international enforcement event, inspecting commercial motor vehicles and their drivers. Each year, there is an emphasis on a different category of violation.
CVSA’s 2017 International Roadcheck Enforcement Event will take place over three days in June; 6/6 to 6/8. This year’s event will place special emphasis on cargo safety. Nothing is quite as thrilling as driving down an Interstate and seeing a flatbed load of train car axles break loose and come flying toward you at 80 MPH.
Inspectors will be primarily conducting the 37-step North American Level I Inspection, checking both the driver and the vehicle. This is the most thorough roadside inspection CVSA gives. This year, there will be special attention paid to cargo safety.
Drivers will be required to show their drivers licenses, shipping documentation, hours of service documentation, and registration. Inspectors will also be checking for the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. The vehicle itself, and its many operating systems, goes through a rigorous inspection. International Roadcheck is the world’s largest targeted enforcement program on commercial motor vehicles. Every minute during the Roadcheck Event, 17 trucks or busses are inspected across North America. Since this program began in 1987, over 1.5 million roadside inspections have been conducted.
If the vehicle successfully passes the CVSA inspection, the inspector will affix a CVSA decal on the windshield. Vehicles displaying the decal are generally not subject to re-inspection for three months.
In addition to the Annual International Roadcheck Enforcement Events, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance, through its trained governmental inspectors, conducts an additional 4 million inspections. These are based on procedures and criteria created by CVSA, known as the North American Standard Inspection Program. The CVSA is administered by the U.S. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, Transport Canada, and Mexico’s Secretariat of Communications and Transportation. This group ensures that vehicle and driver safety criteria are uniform throughout North America.
New technologies and levels of training have enhanced the professionalism of the trucking industry. The CVSA works on keeping everyone safe. The days of “a Jimmy haulin’ hogs,” and “callin’ all trucks” to “go a-huntin’ bear” are gone.
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