The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has teamed up with roadside inspectors across North America to promote brake health and safety.
The CVSA's annual Brake Safety Week, which began yesterday and continues through Saturday, Aug. 28, also coincides with Brake Safety Awareness month.
Brake Safety Week aims to reduce the number of crashes caused or influenced by faulty brake systems on commercial motor vehicles by conducting roadside inspections and identifying and removing unsafe vehicles from roadways. This year's Brake Safety Week focuses on brake hoses and tubing and features outreach and awareness efforts to educate drivers, motor carriers, mechanics, owner-operators and others on the importance of proper brake maintenance operation and performance.
Throughout the week, commercial motor vehicle inspectors have been emphasizing the importance of brake systems by conducting inspections and removing commercial motor vehicles found to have brake-related out-of-service violations from roadways. Brake-related violations accounted for eight out of the top 20 vehicle violations in 2020, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) Motor Carrier Management Information System.
Brake system component checks are part of the regular roadside inspection process, but the extra emphasis on break health reminds drivers of the special role brakes play in the mechanical fitness and safety of commercial vehicles. During last year's Brake Safety Week, 12% of the 43,565 commercial motor vehicles inspected were placed out of service for brake-related violations.
Brake systems on commercial vehicles feature components that work together to slow and stop the vehicle, and brake hoses and tubing are essential for proper operation. Hoses and tubing must be attached properly, be undamaged, without leaks and be appropriately flexible. If and when those components fail, they can cause problems for the rest of the braking system.
During last year's three-day International Roadcheck inspection and enforcement initiative, brake system and brake adjustment violations accounted for 38.6% of all vehicle out-of-service conditions, the most vehicle violations than any other vehicle violation category.