Photo via CVSA

Photo via CVSA

The rate of out-of-service violations for both vehicles and drivers increased in this year’s Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance International Roadcheck, according to recently released results.

During the 30th annual International Roadcheck, which took place June 6-8, 23% of vehicles and 4.2% of drivers that received Level I inspections were placed out of service.

This represents an upswing compared to last year’s Roadcheck, when only 21.5% of vehicles and 3.4% of drivers were placed out of service in Level I inspections.

(If an inspector identifies critical violations, he or she will render the driver or vehicle out of service, which means the driver cannot operate the vehicle until the critical vehicle mechanical conditions or defects, and/or driver qualifications, are corrected.)

In fairness, last year’s rates were the lowest that CVSA had seen since 1991 when it began tracking data on violations. However, this year's numbers were also significantly higher than in 2015, which were just a few ticks higher than in 2016.

In total, 62,013 Level I, II, and III inspections were conducted this year, slightly down from the 62,796 conducted in 2016. Level I inspections made up 40,944 of the total number of inspections. Because the number of inspections fluctuates year to year, comparing rates is a better metric for comparing years.

Brake system violations were once again the leading reason for vehicles being placed out of service at 26.9%, followed by cargo securement and tires/wheels at 15.7% and 15.1%, respectively.

Drivers were placed out of service most often for violations of hours of service, driving with the wrong class license, and false logbooks. There were 710 safety belt violations.

Each International Roadcheck has a specific focus, and this year’s emphasis was on cargo securement. Inspectors found 3,282 cargo securement violations. Improper load securement was the most common cargo securement violation, followed by failure to secure vehicle equipment, and leaking, spilling, blowing or falling cargo.

“This year, we’re celebrating 30 years of the International Roadcheck Program,” said Julius Debuschewitz, CVSA president, from Yukon Highways and Public Works. “When this program started in 1988, the goal of International Roadcheck was to conduct inspections to identify and remove unsafe commercial motor vehicles and/or drivers from our roadways. Thirty years and 1.5 million inspections later, the International Roadcheck enforcement initiative is still going strong, thanks to the more than 13,000 inspectors who work hard every day to reduce the number of crashes, injuries and fatalities on our roadways.”