Roadcheck Safety Inspections Target Driver Logs, Hazmat Transport

LANDOVER, Md. – Federal, state and local safety officials kicked off the annual Roadcheck event here June 3 at FedEx Field with the goal of pulling in 17 trucks and buses per minute across North America for 30-step, Level 1 safety inspections.

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration combine on the effort and spend about 35 minutes per vehicle, including a visual undercarriage inspection and an audit of driver logs for hours-of-service compliance. In recent years, about one-fifth of the vehicles inspected during Roadcheck and almost 5% of the drivers were placed out of service after evaluation by state troopers and other inspectors.

“Our members perform almost 4 million commercial vehicle inspections per year to make the highways a safer way to travel,” said Sgt. Thomas Fuller of the New York State Police and this year’s CVSA president.

State and local law enforcement do most of the actual inspections, but FMCSA pays for most of them. Bill Bronrott, the agency’s deputy administrator, said FMCSA spends half of its annual budget — about $300 million — on grants to the states to fund inspections.

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, another part of the U.S. Department of Transportation, like FMCSA, also took part in this year’s inspections, which included an emphasis on hazmat transport, whether in tank trucks or van trailers.

For more coverage of Roadcheck 2014, see the June 9 issue of Transport Topics.

By Jonathan S. Reiskin