Brake Safety Week Scheduled for Sept 15-22
The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) – the same CVSA that handled the Roadcheck Inspection Blitz earlier this month – is doing it again. This time, they’re focusing on brakes with their annual Brake Safety Week, scheduled for September 15-22.
Focusing on brake hoses and tubing, the CVSA will be doing roadside inspections and “keying in on braking violations.” The announcement comes just two weeks after the end of the Roadcheck inspection blitz, which saw numerous carriers sidelined for various violations.
Luckily, the logistics industry has time to prepare. However, braking systems are much more important to keep maintained than systems checked during the RIB.
What we can expect during Brake Safety Week
Inspections can slow down freight and make it harder for carriers to meet delivery deadlines. But they’re vitally important to the overall health of the industry. Unsafe trucks are time bombs every time they’re on the road. Considering how big and heavy long haul trucks are, unsafe trucks are not a good thing. And when it comes to safety, there’s little more important than brakes.
During the 2018 International Roadcheck inspections, 45% of out-of-service (OOS) violations were brake-related. While we don’t have the OOS numbers yet for this month’s inspection blitz, chances are brakes made up a lot of them. It’s more common than you might think. During the CVSA’s Brake Safety Week last year, almost 5,000 trucks – out of roughly 35,000 inspected – were sidelined.
Like with the Roadside Inspection Blitz, chances are we’re going to see delays in transit and delivery, especially along popular routes. The inspections themselves usually don’t take too long – a carrier can be back on the road within an hour or two. But if they’re smacked with an out-of-service violation, they could be off the road for days.
How the industry is preparing for Brake Safety Week
Right now, it’s roughly still three months away, so carriers have plenty of time. Many of them will likely be putting their trucks under a microscope to make sure their systems are in compliance.
However, some of them may already be planning to take time off. Many carriers took the week off during the Roadcheck Inspection Blitz, after all. Three months is plenty of time to get things in order before the inspections begin.
At the same time, the Roadcheck Inspection Blitz only lasted three days. Brake Safety Week is going to last…well…an entire week.
This will definitely be harder for trucks to avoid. Being off the road for a couple of days doesn’t break the bank the way a week off would. Many independent owner-operators – which make up quite a bit of the auto transport industry – live pretty much paycheck to paycheck. Considering all of the expenses they have, profit margins tend to be fairly thin. Not in the red, mind you, but low enough to make it hard to justify taking a week off.
This however may be trickier for auto shippers, as available freight tends to shrink after Labor Day. We’ve long maintained that auto transport is seasonal in nature, and September usually marks the start of the slow down. We’re anticipating fewer trucks voluntarily taking themselves off the road during this time as freight may be more difficult to come by.
At the same time, there might be more trucks off the road because of the lower amount of freight. We don’t know yet, but we’ll keep you in the loop.
What we learned from the Roadside Inspection Blitz
Here at American Auto Shipping, we didn’t see any drawbacks from trucks being sidelined during the blitz. We saw a decrease in freight moved during that time, but no trucks reported being sidelined for any length of time. If any trucks were given out-of-service violations, it did not affect any of our shipments.
That’s just us, though. We don’t have any data for any other shippers out there or how their trucks or customers fared. It’s not surprising; collating all that data takes time, and presenting it to the public takes even longer. But if this inspection bonanza is any like last time, our customers have nothing to fear.
Perhaps this comes from only using top-rated carriers for our customers. Maybe we just got lucky. Regardless, we don’t have to worry about this for a few months.
For now, it’s business as usual here at American Auto Shipping, so make sure to fill out our online form or call us any time at 800-930-7417 to get a quote and get started on your shipment today.