The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has several scheduled inspection events each year. In addition, they have occasional unannounced single day inspection and enforcement initiatives. On April 27th, CVSA inspectors throughout Canada and the U.S. performed Brake Safety Day inspections with an emphasis on brake systems:
- A total of 9,132 inspections were conducted.
- Of the total number of inspections conducted, 1,290 vehicles were placed out of service.
- The brake-related out-of-service rate was 14.1%.
In addition, inspectors compiled and reported brake hose/tubing violation statistics, which was the focus area for this year’s Brake Safety Day. There were 1,534 brake hose/tubing violations. CVSA asked inspectors to submit data on four categories of brake hose/tubing chafing violations:
- A category 1 violation is when the wear extends into the outer protective material. Thirty-two percent of brake hose/tubing chafing violations were identified as this category. A category 1 violation is not an out-of-service condition.
- Category 2 is when wear extends through the outer protective material into the outer rubber cover. This is not an out-of-service violation. The largest category, 37% of brake hose/tubing chafing violations were category 2.
- In category 3, wear has made the reinforcement ply visible, but the ply remains intact. Thirteen percent of brake hose/tubing chafing violations were identified as category 3, which is not an out-of-service violation.
- In category 4, chafing has caused any part of the fabric/steel brain reinforcement ply to be frayed, severed or cut through. This is an out-service-condition. Eighteen percent of brake hose/tubing chafing violations were category 4.
Even though only Category 4 results in the vehicle being placed out-of-service, the other three categories are considered violations and will ultimately affect your CSA Vehicle Maintenance score.
Keep in mind that most brake hose and tubing is under the vehicle and not part of the normal driver pre-trip inspection. It’s vital that motor carriers inspect their equipment often enough to catch and correct chafing problems before the wear and resulting violation is discovered at a roadside inspection. The charges for a service call far exceed the cost of a routine inspection. The regulations only mandate an annual inspection, but a higher frequency may be the best solution to catch developing problems including brake adjustment issues.