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5 Greatest Practices for Executing Pre- and Put up-Journey Inspections

This publish is a part of a collection sponsored by IAT Insurance coverage Group.

When business drivers are pulled over for DOT roadside inspections, an under-inflated tire, a malfunctioning brake gentle or another variety of tools failures can lead to assessed violations, fines and potential out-of-service-related downtime. Every one among these can negatively affect a motor provider’s DOT compliance file.

It’s estimated that out-of-service autos can value fleets a median of $850 to $1,000 per day. As well as, the failure to ship items on time can lead to buyer dissatisfaction and the doable lack of income out of your buyer taking their enterprise elsewhere.

In a extra extreme state of affairs, a truck driver is concerned in an accident when the brakes malfunction. When the plaintiff’s lawyer finds out the driving force didn’t carry out a federally required pre-trip inspection that day, the repercussions develop.

The Federal Service Security Administration (FMCSA) regulates pre- and post-trip inspections to be carried out by truck drivers on every journey.[1],[2] When business driver’s license (CDL) operators observe documented insurance policies and procedures in finishing these tools inspections, resembling utilizing the U.S. DOT’s pre- and post-trip guidelines,[3] these points can doubtlessly be averted. Sadly, many drivers fail accomplish that.

Out of 59,000 roadside inspections carried out throughout a three-day street security marketing campaign final 12 months, 14,428 violations have been issued for brake techniques, tires, faulty service brakes, lights and cargo securement.[4]

Checking the bins to cut back violations

To considerably cut back the percentages of violations and to make sure tools is protected to function, these greatest practices might help fleets educate and encourage their drivers to carry out their required security checks every day.

  1. Carry out a twice-daily walk-around. When drivers make a behavior of strolling round their car twice a day, inspecting elements resembling tires, lights, brakes and the fifth wheel, any doubtlessly wanted repairs could be famous and addressed. That is additionally the right alternative to fill out the Driver Automobile Inspection Report (DVIR).3

Think about using a pre-trip inspection app to make the inspections simpler for drivers. In lieu of a paper type, utilizing an digital eDVIR might help streamline the method, encourage participation and cut back inspection time.

  1. Embrace pre- and post- journey inspection in your annual coaching and onboarding. Educate and/or evaluation the step-by-step course of to finishing a correct tools inspection to your drivers and emphasize its significance. As well as, instruct them on easy methods to correctly doc that they’ve accomplished the inspection.

Emphasize the timeframe wanted to carry out a pre- or post-trip inspection. Guarantee drivers that their every day pre-trip inspection ought to take solely 10 minutes or quarter-hour on the most.

  1. Report your findings. When points are found throughout the tools inspection course of, care for the difficulty instantly. Proprietor-operators ought to organize to right away repair their truck or trailer, and fleet drivers must be skilled to tell managers instantly.

Doc and preserve information on all tools that exhibits when inspections, service and repairs have been accomplished. Within the occasion of an accident, it’s key to make sure these information can be found.

  1. Concentrate on widespread violations. Generally often known as the BLT’s of kit violations — brakes, lights and tires — fleets ought to instruct their drivers to be additional diligent in inspecting these areas, as they’re probably the most generally assessed tools violations. Along with inspecting their car, drivers should put together and signal a written report itemizing any defect or deficiency that might affect operational security or result in a mechanical breakdown of elements and equipment.

The next must be examined throughout every pre-1 and post-trip2 inspection, per the FMCSA:

  • Service brakes, together with trailer brake connections
  • Parking (hand) brake
  • Steering mechanism
  • Lighting units and reflectors
  • Tires
  • Horn
  • Windshield wipers
  • Rear-vision mirrors
  • Coupling units
  • Wheels and rims
  • Emergency tools
  1. Talk about how tools violations have an effect on the corporate. Inform your drivers that DOT violations result in further inspections, doable lack of prospects as a consequence of a poor DOT compliance file and will increase insurance coverage prices. Good tools inspections assist maintain your drivers and the motoring public protected.


Have a query on easy methods to mitigate danger? Electronic mail for an opportunity to see your query answered in a future weblog.

[1] FMCSA “6.3.4 Gear, Inspection, and Use (392.7-392.9),” Accessed March 21, 2023.

[2] Code of Federal Rules “396.11 driver car inspection report(s),” March 17, 2023.

[3] FMCSA “Driver’s Automobile Inspection Report,” Accessed March 21, 2023.

[4] Josh Fisher “Unhealthy brakes, false logs have been commonest 2022 Roadcheck violations,” Sept. 14, 2022.

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