Brake inspection Photo: Sean Kilcarr/Fleet Owner

CVSA releases 2017 Brake Safety Day results

Safety group said 22% of all vehicles inspected during the one-day event were placed out of service for “violations of any kind.”

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) said that 78% of the 7,698 commercial motor vehicles inspected back in September during its annual Brake Safety Day enforcement blitz did not have any violations that would’ve placed them out of service (OOS).

The group noted that 14% or 1,064 of all the inspections conducted resulted in an OOS violation for brake-related violations, with 22% or 1,680 of all vehicles inspected turning up OOS violations of any kind.

A total of 6,361 commercial motor vehicle inspections were conducted in the U.S. during Brake Safety Day, CVSA added, with 1,337 conducted in Canada.

"Brake-related violations are the largest percentage of all out-of-service violations cited during roadside inspections,” noted Capt. Christopher Turner of the Kansas Highway Patrol in a statement. He also serves as CVSA’s current president.

"Our goal is to reduce the number of crashes caused by faulty braking systems, by conducting roadside inspections, educating drivers, mechanics, owner-operators and others on the importance of proper brake inspection and maintenance,” Turner added.

Brake Safety Day also captures data on how well antilock braking systems (ABS) are maintained in accordance with federal regulations.

CVSA said ABS violations were counted when the malfunction lamp did not work or the malfunction lamp stayed on, indicating a fault of some kind. The ABS-related findings include:

  • 5,456 air-braked power units required ABS; 11% or 610 had ABS violations.
  • 3,749 trailers required ABS; 14% or 540 had ABS violations.
  • 821 hydraulic-braked trucks required ABS; 5% or 45 had ABS violations.
  • 49 buses required ABS; 10% or five had ABS violations.

Turner noted that properly functioning brake systems are crucial to safe commercial motor vehicle operation, as improperly installed or poorly maintained brake systems can reduce braking efficiency and increase the stopping distance of large trucks and buses, posing serious risks to driver and public safety.

Brake Safety Day is part of CVSA’s Operation Airbrake Program in partnership with the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). More than 3.4 million brakes have been inspected since the program’s inception in 1998, CVSA noted.

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