Top Trucking Violations of 2022
When you hear the letters BLT, what's the first thing that comes to mind? Of course you might think of your favorite sandwich, but for truck drivers, these letters can mean something completely different. Brakes, Lights, and Tires are some of the most common safety violations that come up during routine DOT inspections.
As we head into 2023, trucking companies need to be aware of the top trucking violations that the FMCSA and the Department of Transportation (DOT) will be looking for during their regular inspections. In this blog, we will take a look at some of the top trucking violations from 2022 so you know what to expect.
When it comes to DOT inspections, vehicle defects are a major area of concern for fleet management. Under DOT regulations, trucking companies must keep their vehicles in safe operating condition and take appropriate steps to fix any mechanical problems that may arise. Any defect that could interfere with the safety or operation of the truck is grounds for a DOT violation. This can include items such as broken lights, bald tires, defective brakes, and more. To ensure that all vehicles are compliant with DOT regulations, fleet managers should regularly inspect their trucks and address any safety concerns that arise.
Maintaining proper lighting on your fleet of trucks is essential for ensuring safe road travel. According to the DOT, all vehicles must have functioning headlights, taillights, brake lights, turn signals, and reflectors, and must have a white light visible from the front and a red light visible from the rear. Additionally, vehicles must have a working license plate light and side marker lights.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's (FMCSA) Hours of Service (HOS) regulations have been in place since the 1930s, and are the primary enforcement tool for trucking companies operating on U.S. highways.
HOS violations are among the most common and costly trucking violations. The regulations governing HOS are designed to promote driver safety and prevent fatigued driving. Common HOS violations include failing to maintain accurate driver logs, exceeding the maximum hours of service allowed in a given day, and operating a vehicle without taking the required number of breaks.
Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) are designed to track and enforce driver compliance with HOS rules. Keeping elogs that are accurate and up-to-date is mandatory. ELDs also provide a wealth of data that can be used to measure fleet safety and driver performance. To ensure that all vehicles in your fleet are meeting the necessary requirements, consider your options for integrating an ELD system into your fleet management process.
Driver Behavior Violations
Driver violations can include anything from a driver not wearing a seatbelt to speeding, texting while driving, and more. In recent years, these violations have become even more frequent due to an increase in distracted driving caused by mobile devices.
One way that trucking companies can reduce risky driver behaviors and improve safety is to use dash cams for trucks. Dash cams are cameras mounted on the dashboard or inside the windshield of a truck that record video of the driver’s actions during a trip. This data can then be used by fleet safety managers to assess how drivers are behaving on the road and make improvements where necessary. Additionally, dash cams can provide real-time feedback to drivers about their performance, thus reducing the number of potential violations in the future.
Overall, using dash cams for trucks and other fleet management systems can be highly beneficial for trucking companies looking to improve their safety record and reduce violations caused by risky driver behaviors. By making sure that drivers adhere to regulations, companies can create a safe working environment and protect themselves from unnecessary risk and liability.
Tire violations are a common area of concern for commercial trucks that have been inspected by the Department of Transportation (DOT). These violations may include tires that are worn, with inadequate tread depth, or that have improper air pressure. Other tire-related violations may involve bald or retreaded tires, rim damage, and incorrect wheel size or mismatch among dual tires. Before a DOT inspection, a truck driver needs to ensure all tires meet the appropriate standards. Drivers should regularly check their tires for wear and tear, punctures, uneven wear or bulges, and take steps to address any issues found. If necessary, drivers should replace tires with those that meet all applicable DOT standards in order to avoid a potential violation.
Size and Weight
Trucks are subject to size and weight regulations set forth by the DOT. During an inspection, officers will measure the size and weight of a truck to make sure it complies with DOT regulations. A common violation of this regulation is the total weight of the truck exceeding the maximum allowable limit. Additionally, some states have their own size and weight regulations that must be followed. Violations can result in fines and other penalties, depending on the severity of the infraction.
Much of our data is taken from an excellent report published by the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI) in October of last year. It analyzed nearly 750,000 inspection reports to determine the most common violations. Check out the full report here.
Looking for ways to improve the safety of your fleet? Truckspy’s all-in-one fleet management platform could be the solution for you. Click here to schedule a demo.
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by Brenna Nance
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