Observing CVSA Brake Safety Week, August 21-27

August 22, 2022

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has announced that this year’s Brake Safety Week will take place August 21-27. Brake Safety Week is an annual commercial motor vehicle brake-safety inspection, enforcement, and education initiative conducted by North American law enforcement jurisdictions (Canada, Mexico, and the United States).

Throughout the week, inspectors will conduct routine North American Standard Level I and V Inspections and capture and report brake-related data to CVSA, with the results being made available in the fall.

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According to CVSA.org, brake-related violations comprise the largest percentage of all out-of-service vehicle violations cited during roadside inspections. To help combat these issues, CVSA’s Brake Safety Week seeks to:

  • Identify and remove commercial motor vehicles with critical vehicle inspection violation items identified in the North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria from roadways.
  • Conduct inspections and identify and acknowledge commercial motor vehicles that do not have critical vehicle inspection violations by affixing those vehicles with a CVSA decal.
  • Encourage proactive vehicle maintenance in advance of the week.
  • Highlight the hard work and commitment to safety by inspectors, drivers, and motor carriers.
  • Remind drivers and motor carriers about the importance of proper brake maintenance and vehicle pre-trip and post-trip inspections.
  • Provide an opportunity for outreach and educational brake-safety efforts by inspectors.

During the brake portion of a vehicle inspection, inspectors will look for:

  • Missing, non-functioning, loose, contaminated, or cracked parts on the brake system.
  • Non-manufactured holes (such as rust or holes caused by friction).
  • Broken springs in the parking brake housing.
  • Audible air leaks around brake components and lines.
  • Ensure air system maintains air pressure 90-100 psi (620-690 kPa).
  • S-cam flip-over and measure pushrod travel.
  • Ensure slack adjusts are the same length (center of S-cam to center of clevis pin).
  • Air chambers on each axle are the same size.
  • Functioning brake-system warning devices (ABS malfunction lamp(s), low air-pressure warning devices, etc.).
  • Functioning breakaway system on trailer.
  • Functioning tractor protection system (including bleed-back system on the trailer).

In addition to reporting total inspections and brake-related out-of-service violations, inspectors will also capture and provide data on brake hose/tubing chafing violations – the focus area for this year’s Brake Safety Week.

In 2021, 35,764 commercial motor vehicles were inspected in North America from August 22-28. The U.S. reported a 13.5% brake-related out-of-service rate of the 28,694 commercial motor vehicles inspected, with Canada reporting 15.4% of 1,903 and Mexico 2.6% of 5,167. In all, 12% of those vehicles were restricted from travel due to critical brake-related conditions defined by the CVSA’s North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria.