Operation Air Brake inspection results mixed

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For the second year in a row, commercial vehicle inspectors conducted a record number of inspections during Operation Air Brake’s Brake Safety Week, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance announced Wednesday, Nov. 16. This year, although the number of out-of-service defects for both brake adjustment and brake components were down slightly, the overall OOS rate for brakes rose.

“Brakes continue to be the number-one OOS defect. and Brake Safety Week is a reminder of the critical importance they serve in the safe operation of commercial vehicles,” said Stephen Keppler, CVSA executive director.

Overall results of Brake Safety Week, which took place Sept. 11-17, show:
• 30,872 vehicles inspected in 2011, exceeding the 2010 mark of 30,472 vehicles, the previous record inspected, since the program started in 1998;
• 2,605 or 8.4 percent of vehicles placed OOS for brake adjustment (8.9 percent in 2010, 9.0 percent in 2009);
• 2,453(or 7.9 percent of vehicles placed OOS for brake components (8.0 percent in 2010, 9.2 percent in 2009); and
• 4,385 or 14.2 percent of vehicles placed OOS for brakes overall (13.5 percent in 2010, 15.1 percent in 2009).

The OOS rates for Canada again were lower than in the United States for 2011. This year, 8.7 again of vehicles inspected in the United States during Brake Safety Week were placed OOS for poor brake adjustment compared to 3.7 percent in Canada. Inspections in Canada resulted in 7.3 percent of vehicles being placed out of service for brakes compared to 4.4 percent in 2010.

“FMCSA once again applauds Operation Air Brake for saving lives by preventing continued operation of trucks and buses with serious brake problems that place the safety of the traveling public at risk,” said FMCSA Administrator Anne Ferro.