Record number of vehicles checked during Brake Safety Week

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The number of vehicles inspected during Operation Air Brake’s Brake Safety Week reached a historic high this year while also showing a drop in the number of out-of-service defects for brake components and overall out-of-service defects, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance announced Friday, Oct. 15.

Brake Safety Week is a component of the Operation Air Brake campaign, an ongoing effort of an international truck and bus brake safety program dedicated to improving commercial vehicle brake safety throughout North America. Brake Safety Week took place Sept. 12-18 across North America.

“While enforcement is a major focus of Operation Air Brake, education also is critically important,” says Stephen Keppler, CVSA executive director. “CVSA recently completed a survey of 7,500 drivers during Brake Safety Week that showed us education remains a big issue. We use the information gathered from Operation Air Brake to really try to understand problem areas and assist industry in increasing their compliance to improve highway safety for them and the motoring public.”

Overall, 30,472 vehicles were inspected, the highest number of vehicles inspected since the program started in 1998; there were 26,630 inspections in 2009. Also, 2,717 vehicles were placed OOS for brake adjustments (8.9 percent in 2010, 9.0 percent in 2009); 2,435 vehicles were placed OOS for brake components (8.0 percent in 2010, 9.2 percent in 2009); and 4,117 vehicles were placed OOS for brakes (13.5 percent in 2010, 15.1 percent in 2009).

The Operation Air Brake Campaign was developed and initiated by Canada in 1998. Historically, OOS rates have been lower in Canada, and this continues in 2010; during Brake Safety Week 2010, 13.7 percent of vehicles in the United States were placed OOS for brake adjustments compared to 10.3 percent in Canada. Canada also reported a significant drop in the OOS rates for brakes in 2010 (4.4 percent) versus 2009 (6.5 percent).

“The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is to be commended for their outstanding efforts toward improving safety on our roads and highways,” says Anne Ferro, administrator for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. “I thank CVSA for their leadership during Brake Safety Week and for their partnership throughout the year in protecting lives.”