GREENBELT, Md. — Brake Safety Week will proceed as planned Aug. 23-29, according to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA).
During the weeklong event, law-enforcement officials will conduct inspections on commercial motor vehicles. Commercial vehicles that have critical out-of-service brake violations or other critical vehicle out-of-service inspection item violations will be restricted from traveling until the violations are corrected. Vehicles that pass eligible inspections may qualify for a passed-inspection CVSA decal.
Brake Safety Week is part of law enforcement’s effort to reduce brake-related crashes by conducting roadside inspections and identifying and removing unsafe commercial motor vehicles from roadways.
“Despite the pandemic, commercial motor vehicle safety inspectors continue to prioritize vehicle and driver safety by conducting inspections every day,” said CVSA President Sgt. John Samis with the Delaware State Police.
“Safety is always our top priority and it’s our mission to ensure the vehicles on our roadways have met all safety standards and regulations,” Samis continued. “This is especially important as we rally behind truck drivers as they transport essential goods during this public health crisis. We need to do everything we can to ensure that the vehicles truck drivers are driving are as safe as possible.”
Checking brake-system components is always part of the roadside inspection process; however, inspectors will be paying special attention to brake hoses/tubing during this year’s Brake Safety Week to highlight the importance of those components to a vehicle’s mechanical fitness and safety.
The brake systems on commercial motor vehicles contain multiple components that work together to slow and stop the vehicle — and brake hoses/tubing are essential for the proper operation of those systems. Brake hoses/tubing must be properly attached, undamaged, without leaks and appropriately flexible. When brake hoses/tubing fail, they can cause problems for the entire braking system.
During last year’s International Roadcheck inspection and enforcement initiative, brake system and brake adjustment violations accounted for 45.1% of all out-of-service conditions. That’s more than any other vehicle violation category. And during last year’s Brake Safety Week, 13.5% of the commercial motor vehicles inspected had brake-related vehicle inspection item violations and were placed out of service.
“Brakes are one of the most important systems in a vehicle,” Samis said. “Failure of any component of a brake system could be catastrophic. Routine brake system inspections and component replacement are vital to the safety of commercial motor vehicles.”
In addition to including CVSA’s Brake Safety Week, August is Brake Safety Awareness Month. Along with inspections and enforcement, law-enforcement agencies also engage in outreach and awareness efforts to educate drivers, motor carriers, mechanics, owner-operators and others about the importance of proper brake maintenance, operation and performance.
Brake Safety Week is part of CVSA’s Operation Airbrake program, in partnership with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators.