Dec. 21 – State inspections of heavy trucks and restricting them to the right-hand lane are just two of 66 recommendations made by a North Carolina task force on improving truck safety in the state.
The state does not have an annual inspection program for large trucks. Under the federal program, owners can conduct the inspections themselves or hire an outside inspector, which a member of Citizens for Reliable and Safe Highways says “is like the fox guarding the henhouse,” reports the Associated Press.
Other recommendations include restricting trucks to the right lane of multi-lane highways, keeping weigh stations open longer, building more areas where trucks can safely pull over for inspections, adding more truck parking spaces at rest areas, and buying the DMV infrared heat-seeking technology so officers can quickly inspect truck brakes.
Some recommendations are already being put into place, such as a bus inspection program and studying how to keep weigh stations open longer. Others are going to require money and the approval of the state General Assembly. Transportation Secretary Norris Tolson and other state DOT officials are deciding which recommendations to push during the 1999 legislative session.