2021 CVSA Brake Safety Week: DOT Inspection Results

2021 CVSA Brake Safety Week: DOT Inspection Results

Nearly 4,000 commercial motor vehicles in the U.S. with critical brake violations removed from roadways during 2021 Brake Safety Week

During the annual CVSA Brake Safety Week enforcement blitz, from August 22-28, 2021, enforcement officials inspected 35,764 commercial motor vehicles across the U.S, Canada, and Mexico.

According to CVSA’s released data, 12% of the vehicles inspected were placed out of service (OOS) due to critical brake-related inspection item conditions until critical brake violations were corrected, much like the brake safety week results of 2020 and a slight decrease from the 2019 blitz.

The annual inspection blitz was conducted at fixed weigh stations, temporary pop-up inspection sites and during roving roadway patrols.

HOW TO PASS CVSA BRAKE SAFETY WEEK INSPECTIONS

What was the inspection focus?

According to the US federal regulations and the North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria, if your brake system efficiency falls below the minimum of 43.5%, your vehicle will be put out of service.

In Canada, 1,903 commercial motor vehicles were inspected. The brake-related out-of-service rate was 15.4%. The out-of-service rate related to brakes in the U.S. was 13.5% out of the 28,694 commercial motor vehicles inspected. And in Mexico, 5,167 inspections were conducted with a brake-specific out-of-service rate of 2.6%.

In addition, during Brake Safety Week, inspectors in Canada, Mexico and the U.S. recorded 5,667 brake hose chafing violations, which are a common brake-related violation, whether out-of-service or not. 

Inspectors focused on violations involving brake hoses and brake tubing, which resulted in identifying:

  • 1,970 violations – Wear extends into outer protective material, where applicable.
  • 1,730 violations – Wear extends through outer protective material into outer rubber cover.
  • 1,026 violations – Wear makes reinforcement ply visible, but ply is intact.
  • 567 violations (OOS) – Reinforcement ply is visible, and ply is completely frayed, severed, or cut through.
  • 374 violations (OOS) – Wear extends through reinforcement ply to inner rubber layer.

Why is CMV brake safety a big deal?

The CVSA brake safety enforcement and awareness campaigns are meant to remove unsafe drivers from roads and remind drivers that braking systems need to be checked regularly.

Brake-related violations accounted for more OOS vehicle conditions (26.5%) than any other vehicle violation during CVSA’s three-day International Roadcheck inspection in May.

According to the FMCSA latest “Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts” report, “Brake system” was the third most cited vehicle-related factor in fatal commercial motor vehicle and passenger vehicle crashes.

Regular checks help to preserve the safety of both the drivers and others on the road. Although this campaign had a specific focus on brake violations, inspecting the brakes is a normal part of procedure during roadside inspections.

Stay DOT compliant

Knowing what your CSA score is and how it affects your company and all of the requirements to pass inspections, whether it be for brake safety or suspension and steering, will allow you to stay compliant and plan your operations more efficiently.

All CNS services are geared toward keeping your trucking company safe and compliant so that you stay on the road and pass all truck inspections.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

Surprise CVSA HAZMAT Road Blitz Found 14% Violations in June 2021

Motor carriers whose drivers transport hazardous materials/dangerous goods are specially trained in emergency safety and applicable HM/DG federal regulations.

During the surprise five-day CVSA 2021 HM/DG Road Blitz in June, inspectors spotlight safety-compliant drivers, shippers and motor carriers with vehicles containing hazardous materials/dangerous goods to ensure everything is appropriately marked, placarded, packaged, and secured while being transported on our roadways.

Any vehicles found to have HM/DG out-of-service (OOS) violations, or any other driver/vehicle OOS violations, were restricted from traveling until all OOS violations were addressed.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OTHER CVSA INSPECTIONS

How many CMVs were stopped, inspected, and cited violations?

In the U.S. and Canada, 10,905 commercial motor vehicles and 8,363 HM/DG packages were inspected over that five-day period. Inspectors identified 2,714 violations, which included:

  • 496 shipping papers violations
  • 628 non-bulk/small means of containment packaging violations
  • 390 bulk packaging/large means of containment placarding violations
  • 277 non-bulk/small means of containment labeling violations
  • 307 bulk/large means of containment placarding violations
  • 167 other safety marks violations
  • 288 loading and securement violations
  • 50 HM/DG package integrity (leaking) violations

Below is a summary of the HM/DG class types inspected.

Class DescriptionCanadaMexicoU.S.Total
Class 1Explosives, such as ammunition, fireworks, flares, etc.11590317522
Class 2Flammable, non-flammable/non-poisonous and poisonous.2863671,5642,217
Class 3Flammable liquids, such as acetone, adhesives, paints, gasoline, ethanol, methanol, some pesticides, etc.4841, 5263,1405,150
Class 4Flammable solids, substances liable to spontaneously combust and substances that, on contact with water, emit flammable gases, such as white phosphorus and sodium.10217133252
Class 5Oxidizing agents and organic peroxides, such as hydrogen peroxide, potassium permanganate, sodium nitrite, ammonium nitrate fertilizers and oxygen generators.11026203339
Class 6Toxic and infectious substances; any material, other than a gas, that is so toxic to humans that it presents a health hazard during transportation, such as cyanide, biological samples, clinical wastes and some pesticides.11339120272
Class 7Radioactive materials, such as cobalt and cesium.96240138
Class 8Liquid or solid corrosive substances, such as sulfuric acid and sodium hydroxide, that cause full thickness destruction of human skin at the site of contact within a specified time.1921601,1491,501
Class 9Miscellaneous HM/DG, such as acetaldehyde ammonia, asbestos, elevated temperature materials and benzaldehyde.114146430690

The CVSA HM/DG Road Blitz helps increase awareness of the hazardous materials/dangerous goods rules and regulations in place to keep the driver, the public and the environment safe.

Hazmat and DOT Training

At CNS, we are fully capable to handle your HAZMAT compliance training or other DOT training.

There are many rules, regulations, and requirements in each state for authorities to keep track of when it comes to hauling hazardous material. If you are not DOT compliant, it could be detrimental to your company, as fines and penalties can be upwards of $180,000.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

The Saga of California’s AB5 Independent Contractor Law For The Trucking Industry

How AB5 affects the trucking industry in California and nearby states

On Sept. 18, 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed bill AB5 into law that will make it more difficult for companies to classify people who work for them as independent contractors with the new ABC test.

Under the ABC Test, a worker is presumed to be an employee unless the employer can show that all three of the following “prongs” or conditions are satisfied:

  1. the worker is free from the control and direction of the hiring entity in connection with the performance of the work,
  2. the worker performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business, and
  3. the worker is customarily engaged in an independently established trade, occupation, or business of the same nature as that involved in the work performed.

Hours before the law was to take effect Jan. 2020, a federal judge issued a temporary restraining order blocking the state from enforcing it upon truck drivers.

Days later, a hearing on the trucking group’s request for a preliminary injunction was set and the plaintiffs can argue that they have carried their burden for purposes of emergency relief to show:

  • that they are likely to succeed on the merits,
  • likely to suffer irreparable harm in the absence of relief,
  • that the balance of equities tips in their favor, and
  • that their requested relief is in the public interest.

Fast forward more than a year to May 2021 and a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has struck down a lower court’s injunction against the application of the California’s AB5 contractor law and its ABC test to trucking.

The California Trucking Association has 14 days to seek rehearing, which should be expected on or before May 12. If this request is denied, or if the rehearing fails to change the view of the court, it will be just seven days before the injunction lifts.  

More recently, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to hear the first AB5 case from carrier Cal Cartage on October 4, 2021, leaving in place a split in authority regarding whether states can change the rules regarding how truckers are treated.

The next step will be CTA’s case at the U.S. Supreme Court that relies on slightly different arguments and factual statements than Cal Cartage case.

 

How AB5 affects the trucking industry in California and nearby states

To describe the situation, let us look at port truckers in California. There are around 13,000 truckers regularly serving the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. However, only a few hundred are classified as employees.

The others are owner-operators who traditionally:

  • lease their rigs from trucking companies,
  • drive under those companies’ permits, and
  • rely on them for work assignments.

These owner-operators are paid by the load and get a 1099 independent contractor tax form at the end of the year.

While this is a popular business model, there are some who abuse this relationship. For example, to meet the state’s strict clean-air regulations, trucking companies forced drivers to purchase new trucks beginning in 2008 rather than assume the expense. Many drivers, who also pay for diesel fuel, repairs, and insurance, fell into debt as they worked overtime to pay off huge loans for their trucks. If they missed payments, some companies reclaimed the trucks and fired the drivers, seizing their equity.

The new AB5 law would basically require carriers to hire the independent contractors and pay them health insurance and other employee benefits.


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It is not just California carriers that must deal with the law’s ABC test B prong, which requires carriers and contractors to be in essentially separate areas of business. Carriers across the state’s border that deliver inside California will be required to meet this B prong as well.

Today, the carriers that have been taking the “wait and see” approach on the law and the court’s process are now facing a near-term reality that the independent contractor system might not be possible and will have to face an increase in costs to hire the drivers.

Other carriers have been cutting ties with California as the cost of doing business in the state are greater than the reward and pull out of any California operations to shield themselves from the impact of the AB5 law.

 

CNS can help fleets with our new driver hire program

If AB5 does not include a trucking exemption, then there will be a flood of independent carriers going through a new hire process. There are a lot of rules around the hiring process, not limited to drug testing, CDL Clearinghouse queries, compliant DQ file process, and more.

To get these drivers on the road fast, Compliance Navigation Specialists has developed a new hire program that will streamline your hiring process.

Our New Hire service includes the following:

  • Tailor Drive Qualification file (paper) or Online Tailored Driver Qualification File (Paperless)
  • Initial Audit
  • Previous employer inquires completed on your behalf
  • Initial Motor Vehicle Report (MVR)
  • Pre-Screening program report (PSP)
  • Online Record Retention
  • Pre-employment drug screening verification
  • Doctor on medical card verification
  • FMCSA clearinghouse full query
  • Driver Qualification
  • New Hire phone support
  • and more

Accuracy, organization and diligence are crucial to keeping your files in order and ready for an audit at a moment’s notice. Our DQF Management System is completely customizable to your individual needs. The consultants at CNS stay in communication with you regarding document updating, as well as offering comprehensive reports upon request, and reports of routine audits by our own DQF Auditors.

Our driver management and new hire management services will exceed your expectations. You focus on trucking, and let us focus on your driver file management. If you have a fleet of drivers, we assure you that you can’t do this cheaper in-house.

Eliminate the administration cost and have Compliance Navigation Specialists manage your files.

We will ensure that your information is collected, current, and complete. In addition, we will continue to update your files as required, and let you know when an updated piece of information is needed.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

Driver File Management

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CVSA 2021 Operation Safe Driver Week Shows 31% Decline in Drivers Pulled Over

CVSA 2021 Operation Safe Driver Week Shows 31% Decline in Drivers Pulled Over

The goal of Operation Safe Driver Week is to discourage dangerous driving behaviors. This is accomplished through a heightened law enforcement presence on our roadways and increasing interactions between risky drivers and law enforcement officers.

This year’s Operation Safe Driver Week saw 17,910 passenger vehicle drivers (down 51% over last year’s program) and 28,148 commercial motor vehicle drivers (down 6% over last year’s program) from July 11-17.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CVSA OPERATION SAFE DRIVER WEEK, JULY 11-17, 2021 >>>

During this week in 2021, law enforcement issued 27,349 warnings and citations where last year they issued over 70,000 warnings and citations (a 62% decline).

For speeding, passenger vehicle drivers received 9,349 citations (a 35% decline over 2020) and only 2,929 warnings (a 71% decline over 2020).

On the other hand, commercial motor vehicles received 1,690 speeding citations (down 28% over last year) and 2,549 speeding warnings (a 26% decline over last year).

The top citations and warnings for CMV drivers were:

ViolationCitationsViolationWarnings
1. Speeding/basic speed law/driving too fast for conditions1,6901. Speeding/basic speed law/driving too fast for conditions2,549
2. Failure to use a seat belt1,225  2. Failure to use a seat belt954
3. Failure to obey traffic control device5223. Failure to obey traffic control device869
4. Texting/using a handheld phone3444. Texting/using a handheld phone336
5. Improper lane change1125. Following too closely310

Failure to wear a seatbelt was the second highest violation for both types of drivers and buckling up is the single most effective thing vehicle drivers and passengers can do to protect themselves in the event of a crash. Officers issued 1,355 citations and 354 warnings to passenger vehicle drivers, and 1,225 citations and 954 warnings to commercial motor vehicle drivers.

In addition to traffic enforcement, 2,469 motorists were assisted during Operation Safe Driver Week, highlighting law enforcement’s commitment to public service and roadway safety. Motorist assistance may include help fixing a flat tire, providing gasoline for a stranded vehicle, checking on someone who may be pulled over, assisting individuals in distress or experiencing a medical emergency, jump-starting a vehicle, traffic control, etc.

Why is CVSA Operation Safe Driver Week important?

This CVSA Program focuses specifically on drivers because drivers’ actions—whether it be speeding or just the failure to pay attention to driving—are responsible for most crashes and contribute to a staggering 94% of all traffic crashes.

Data shows that traffic stops and interactions with law enforcement help reduce problematic driving behaviors.

By interacting with drivers during Operation Safe Driver Week, law enforcement personnel aim to make our roadways safer by targeting high-risk driving behaviors.

  • Speeding has been a factor in more than a quarter of crash deaths since 2008. (Source)
  • Speeding of any kind was the most frequent driver-related crash factor for drivers of commercial motor vehicles and passenger vehicles. (Source)
  • Speeding was a factor in 26% of all traffic fatalities in 2018, killing 9,378 people or an average of more than 25 people per day. (Source)
  • Distracted driving claimed 3,142 lives in 2019. (Source)
  • Of the 22,215 passenger vehicle occupants killed in 2019, 47% were not wearing seat belts. Seat belts saved an estimated 14,955 lives and could have saved an additional 2,549 people if they had been wearing seat belts, in 2017 alone. (Source)
  • Every day, about 28 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes — that’s one person every 52 minutes. In 2019, 10,142 people lost their lives due to drunk driving. (Source)

DOT Compliance Programs (PSM)

At CNS, our DOT Compliance Programs focus on Proactive Safety Management (PSM),a mindset that will ensure your fleet’s safety and compliance is always in order and ahead of the FMCSA.

Our PSM Motor Carrier Program includes:

  • ELD management
  • Driver Qualification File Management
  • New driver on-boarding
  • Driver safety meetings
  • CSA score management
  • Policies and handbooks
  • Vehicle maintenance
  • and more

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

FMCSA Nominee discusses Safety Regulations, Driver Retention and New Entrant Programs

FMCSA Nominee discusses Safety Regulations, Driver Retention and New Entrant Programs

Serving as deputy administrator of FMCSA since January 2021, Meera Joshi is waiting to be confirmed as the next FMCSA administrator.

Prior to her nomination, Joshi served as chair and CEO of the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission, general manager of the New York Office of Sam Schwartz Transportation Consultants and was a visiting scholar at the New York University Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management.

The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation could vote on her nomination any day, which would go to the Senate floor for official confirmation.

As we wait for her confirmation, let us look at what the future could bring for the trucking and transportation industry under her leadership.

What is the FMCSA focused on in the next few years?

With more than 500,000 interstate carriers and 4.7 million commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders across the nation, the FMCSA and its 1,100 employees will oversee significant changes for drivers and carriers. 

Joshi met with the senate committee on Sept. 22 where she shared her views on regulating the trucking industry, shortening detention times for drivers, roadway safety, and how technology will play a more significant role in the FMCSA approach to self-driving vehicles and increased artificial intelligence in trucks.

Infrastructure Bill

To begin, Joshi supports the bipartisan hard infrastructure bill that may be nearing approval. The bill will:

  • increase funding for FMCSA state partners to hire additional personnel for roadside inspections and reach the true breadth of the vast commercial motor vehicle (CMV) industry
  • provide FMCSA and states the opportunity to increase investigative and enforcement resources focused on high-risk motor carriers and in high crash zones
  • support essential upgrades to states’ IT infrastructure to improve CMV driver data collection and transfer, as well as allow for the integration of safety technology into CMV fleets

FMCSA Safety Regulations

When it comes to safety regulations, Joshi mentions four important priorities:

  1. Electronic transfer of license data between states: This rulemaking is in the final months of getting published for interstate cooperation as there needs to be swift and current data transfer between states around CDL licensure.
  2. Have state’s downgrade license if a positive drug test is submitted to FMCSA’s Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse to keep risky drivers off the roads
  3. Strengthening FMCSA’s new entrant program
  4. Increase the scope of motor carrier investigations to encompass more at-risk behavior

As a new entrant, it is required to follow Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations and they will want to see some established records and processes during your New Entrant Safety Audit that will happen within the first 12 months of operation to complete the New Entrant Program.

Tips For New Drivers Rushing To Become Owner-Operators

Commercial Truck Driver Retention

When it comes to decreasing unpaid driver detention time, Joshi mentioned creating the financial incentives for shippers and port operators to decrease that time so that that financial burden doesn’t fall on truckers.

Lastly, about driver retention and capacity, Joshi mentioned the pilot program for the FMCSA to allow 18 to 21-year-old drivers to participate in interstate commerce apprenticeship programs. There are several provisions she mentioned with this program:

  • They must have a CDL license to begin with
  • There is an hours-of-service requirement
  • There is a safeguard within the legislation for termination, if there are any safety concerns, and
  • The program requires the FMCSA to do a very important study on driver compensation, including paid and unpaid detention time

DOT Training

All fleets need to conduct proper and thorough pre and post trip inspections, which consists of implementing quality:

  • driver training that is ongoing and consistent
  • driver education, and
  • driver awareness of current and changing traffic laws

All of this will help prevent being targeted by the DOT at roadside inspections and is a valuable resource to ensure a healthy fleet, and compliant safety practices.

Our DOT trainers offer a variety of in-person or online training courses tailored to the specific needs or weaknesses of your company.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

Truckers Traveling In Oregon Face Increased Tire Chain Law Fines This Winter

Truckers Traveling In Oregon Face Increased Tire Chain Law Fines This Winter

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) announced on Sept. 20 that they will double the fines for truckers who fail to use tire chains when required.

The fine comes from a new Oregon law, HB3055, taking effect Sept. 25, increasing the failure to use chains to $880. However, the costs can increase if the chainless truck crashes into another vehicle.

Before the increase, the fine was $440, which was an increase from the Class C violation of $165 before 2017.

According to an ODOT news release, the estimated cost of delays caused by trucks failing to follow Oregon chain laws is over $8 million a year to the motor carrier industry and other highway users. When a truck loses traction, it can not only delay its delivery but also delay everyone else on the road behind a stuck truck.

In 2017,ODOT enforced 1,404 citations and warnings for all chain violations with more than half of these citations and warnings for not carrying chains.

Specifically for motor carriers, ODOT found 21 motor carriers had 4 or more citations, 6 motor carriers had 8 or more citations, and 3 motor carriers had 10 or more citation during the 2017 winter season.

Oregon chain laws for Commercial vehicles with trailers

According to Oregon state law, all commercial vehicles to carry chains whenever road conditions might require their use during your trip and signs are posted. You will need to have six chains on hand to comply in Oregon.


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The law also requires vehicles to chain up when signs tell you that conditions ahead require them.

Mountain passes to be aware of when traveling through the state include Siskiyou on I-5, Cabbage on I-84, and Mt. Hood on US 26.

CMVs with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more that are towing one or more trailers must have the following tire chain setup:

  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle and two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer;
  • A single-drive axle commercial vehicle towing both a semitrailer and a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the drive axle, two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer, and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle, or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on one tire of the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle; or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer;
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing both a semitrailer and a trailer shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side of any axle on the semitrailer and one tire on the front axle and one tire on one of the rear axles of the trailer; and
  • A tandem-drive axle commercial vehicle towing a semitrailer and a semitrailer that are connected by kingpin-to-fifth wheel assemblies, commonly referred to as a “B-Train,” or connected by kingpin-to-fifth wheel “C-dolly” assemblies, commonly referred to as a “C-Train”, shall have chains on two tires on each side of the primary drive axle; or if both axles of the vehicle are powered by the drive line, one tire on each side of each drive axle. Chains shall also be placed on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the semitrailer at the B-train or C-train connection, and on two tires, one on each side, of any axle of the rear semitrailer.

DOT Training

All fleets need to conduct proper and thorough pre and post trip inspections, which consists of implementing quality:

  • driver training that is ongoing and consistent
  • driver education, and
  • driver awareness of current and changing traffic laws

All of this will help prevent being targeted by the DOT at roadside inspections and is a valuable resource to ensure a healthy fleet, and compliant safety practices.

Our DOT trainers offer a variety of in-person or online training courses tailored to the specific needs or weaknesses of your company.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

Colorado is the earliest chain law state, starting September 1

Colorado winter tire chain law

Unpredictable weather systems can happen anytime, however snow often begins sticking to high-elevation routes in Colorado as early as mid- to late September.

According to Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), from Sept. 1 through May 31, all commercial vehicles traveling on I-70 between the Dotsero exit (mile point (MP) 133) and the Morrison exit (MP 259) must carry sufficient chains to be in compliance with the Colorado chain law.

For drivers and the public’s safety, it is important to use chains in compliance with Colorado’s chain law for commercial vehicles fitting into one of the following categories:

  • Vehicles with a gross combination weight rating of more than 26,000 pounds, inclusive of a towed unit, which has a gross vehicle weight-rating of more than 10,000 pounds
  • Vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds, or
  • Vehicles designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver

The fine for not carrying chains on I-70 between mileposts 133 and 259 from September 1 to May 31 is $50 plus a $17 surcharge. Statewide, the fine for not chaining up when the chain law is in effect is $500 plus a $79 surcharge. The fine for not chaining up and subsequently blocking the highway is $1,000 plus a $157 surcharge.

At a minimum, the CDOT will notify the public of the travel restriction with erected static and electronic variable message roadway signs. Additionally, CDOT may utilize radio channels, the official CDOT travel website (www.cotrip.org/), phone message system, email, text and other automated personal notification systems.


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Tire Chains Allowed in Colorado:

Metal chains must consist of two circular metal loops–one on each side of the tire–connected by not less than nine evenly spaced chain loops across the tread. Commercial vehicles that have four or more drive wheels must chain four wheels and dual tire chains are acceptable.

Alternate Traction Devices
Approved Alternate Traction Devices (ATDs) in Colorado are:

  • wheel sanders, which carry enough sand to get the vehicle through the restricted area
  • pneumatically driven chains, which spin under the drive wheels automatically as traction is lost, and
  • textile traction device (TTD), a fabric boot which encompasses the tire. Currently, the only TTD that has been approved for use on Colorado state highways is the AutoSock.

Tire Cables
With only two exceptions, Colorado chain law rules do not permit tire cables as alternate traction devices.

Check out our industry library resources of 15 videos, 2 ebooks, industry links, and CNS In The News content.

The exceptions are:

  1. tire cables with high strength steel cross member rollers 0.415″ or greater in diameter, which can be used on all commercial vehicles except single drive axle combinations; and
  2. on a tandem power drive axle commercial vehicle, where any type of cable can be used only if there are chains on the two outside tires of one of the power drive axles and cables on two or more tires of the other power drive axle.

 

Colorado Chain Law Levels

There are two levels for chain laws in Colorado—Level 1/Code 17 and Level 2/Code 18—and each level has specific conditions in which it can be implemented.

Chain Law Level 1/Code 17:
All single-drive axle combination commercial vehicles must chain all four drive wheels; cables are not permitted as ATDs. All other commercial vehicles must have snow tires or chains.

Level 1/Code 17 may be implemented any time there is snow covering any part of the traveled portion of pavement on an ascending grade.

Chain Law Level 2/Code 18:
All commercial vehicles must chain up. Single drive axle combination and tandem drive axle commercial vehicles must chain four drive wheels.

Auto-transports must comply to the extent possible without causing damage to hydraulic lines. Buses must chain two drive wheels to be DOT compliant.

Level 2/Code 18 may be implemented any time there is snow covering the entire traveled portion of pavement on an ascending grade, or when driving conditions dictate that this level is necessary to protect safety and to minimize road closures.

Be sure to review our complete guide on extreme weather and regulations affecting drivers this season.


DOT Training

All fleets need to conduct proper and thorough pre and post trip inspections, which consists of implementing quality:

  • driver training that is ongoing and consistent
  • driver education, and
  • driver awareness of current and changing traffic laws

All of this will help prevent being targeted by the DOT at roadside inspections and is a valuable resource to ensure a healthy fleet, and compliant safety practices.

Our DOT trainers offer a variety of in-person or online training courses tailored to the specific needs or weaknesses of your company.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

COVID-19 Relief Haulers HOS Waiver Extended To Nov 31 With New Reporting Requirement

Truckers and COVID-19 | DOT Compliance Services | CNS

The latest FMCSA extension, which was previously set to expire on Aug. 31, extends the hours of service for COVID relief haulers through November 30th.

However, there is a new requirement where carriers will report their use of the exemption within 5 days after the end of each month by accessing their portal accounts (Portal.FMCSA.DOT.gov/login). After logging in, carriers will need to access “Emergency Declaration Reporting” under the “Available FMCSA Systems” section of the page.

The waiver is for the following categories only:

  • Livestock and livestock feed
  • Medical supplies and equipment related to testing, diagnosis, and treatment of COVID-19
  • Vaccines, constituent products, and medical supplies and equipment including ancillary supplies/kits for the administration of vaccines, related to the prevention of COVID-19
  • Supplies and equipment necessary for community safety, sanitation, and prevention of community transmission of COVID-19 such as masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, soap and disinfectants
  • Food, paper products and other groceries for emergency restocking of distribution centers or stores
  • Gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and ethyl alcohol
  • Supplies to assist individuals impacted by the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic (e.g., building materials for individuals displaced or otherwise impacted as a result of the emergency)

The FMCSA said it decided to extend the declaration because “the presidentially declared emergency remains in place and because, although the number of COVID-19 cases began to decline in the U.S. following widespread introduction of vaccinations, the delta variant and lagging vaccination rates reversed that downward trajectory and have resulted in a rapid rise in infections and hospitalizations around the country.”

Motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance in support of relief efforts related to COVID-19 are exempt from Parts 390 through 399 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.

According to the FMCSA, “Direct assistance does not include routine commercial deliveries, including mixed loads with a nominal quantity of qualifying emergency relief added to obtain the benefits of this emergency declaration.”

CNS will assist with DataQs

Incorrect violations can be challenged and our DataQ process and our DOT consultants are well-versed in the FMCSA rules and regulations, with specific knowledge on what officers are required to note in their report. We are able to challenge one DataQ or schedule a monthly review of all roadside inspections and report on which violations can be challenged.

Our DOT Compliance Specialists can help with DataQs. Call one of our DOT Compliance Specialists at 888.260.9448 to discuss your options or you can request more information in the form below.

Under 21 Driver Assessment Tool Shows Promise in Beta Test

Under 21 Driver Assessment Tool Shows Promise in Beta Test

“We need to find ways to expand the pool of safe truck drivers, and ATRI’s preliminary research indicates that safe, younger drivers can be found, “said Joyce Brenny, Brenny Transportation, Inc. CEO. 

ATRI, American Transportation Research Institute, released results of the Phase 1 Beta Test of its Younger Driver Assessment Tool exploring if an assessment tool to identify the safest 18-20 year old drivers is possible.

This is a critical step in expanding interstate CDL eligibility to younger drivers as the American Trucking Associations (ATA) have the driver shortage topping 100,000 by the year 2023 based on projected freight growth, industry retirements, and competition from other industries.

What is the trucking industry doing to attract younger drivers?

In hopes to increase the share of younger drivers in the industry, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) proposed an under-21 commercial driver pilot program allowing young drivers aged 18, 19, and 20 to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce. Currently 18 to 20-year-olds are only allowed to operate intrastate commerce.

Additionally, the proposed infrastructure bill includes initiatives to grow the trucking workforce with an apprenticeship program for drivers younger than 21 to work in interstate commerce, addressing the growing truck driver shortage across the country. 

However, one of the concerns with opening the labor pool to younger drivers is that young people are more likely to engage in higher risk driving behaviors.

How will the trucking industry measure young driver safety risk?

Data from the U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) indicate that individuals under 24 years of age represented 18.4 percent of drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2017 while representing just 11.8 percent of the licensed driving population that year.

The beta test findings for the Younger Driver Assessment Tool provided limited support for the idea that low risk commercial truck drivers can be identified based on behavioral indicators in their Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) and Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) safety records.

In general, and counter to expectations, cognitive functioning was not reliably associated with histories of violations or crashes in the group of 16 drivers used during initial testing.

In the small sample, the truck driving safety profiles of current truck drivers—as measured by motor vehicle records and pre-employment screening data—can be differentiated based on personality traits, physiological characteristics, and aspects of mental health.

With expanded statistical validation, this methodology may be successfully applied to the assessment and selection of new entrants into the industry’s workforce, including younger drivers.

Ultimately, the goal of the assessment tool would be to secure younger drivers with the cognitive and mental attributes of mature, experienced drivers, which based on data implies that they are more likely to be safe drivers.

ATRI’s Phase II assessment will focus on a larger sample of young drivers by recruiting individuals in the 18- to 25-year-old age range from commercial driving schools.

Learn more about all levels of truck driver training and CDL permit test preparation that we offer at our CNS Driver Training Center.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.

CVSA International Truck Inspection Results For 2021

CVSA truck inspection results

On May 4-6, 2021—as part of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance’s (CVSA) International Roadcheck—40,000+ truck inspections were conducted, removing 6,710 commercial vehicles and 2,080 drivers from roads across the US and Canada.

The International Roadcheck is conducted annually and is meant to remove unsafe commercial motor vehicles (CMV) and drivers from roads. During this 72-hour inspection, 16.5% of vehicles and 5.3% of drivers were placed out of service. In comparison, last year’s Roadcheck in late September 2020 had a vehicle out-of-service rate of 22.2% and a driver out-of-service rate of 5.3%.

The basis for violations comes from the CVSA North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria.

What are the levels for CVSA Truck Inspections?

There are eight different levels of inspection that the CVSA follows, however the truck inspections in this roadcheck were only subjected to the North American Standard (NAS) Level I, II, and III Inspections.

  • NAS Level I Inspection—includes a 37-step procedure examining the driver operating requirements and vehicle mechanical fitness.
  • NAS Level II Inspection—includes anything that can be inspected without getting under the CMV.
  • NAS Level III Inspection—includes a review of driver requirements, such as the license, cargo and vehicle documentation, record of duty status, seat belt usage, etc.

There were over 23,135 Level I Inspections conducted, removing 5,048 vehicles (21.8%) and 1,200 (5.2%) drivers from roadways.

There were over 9,410 Level II Inspections conducted, removing 1,593 vehicles (16.9%) and 549 (5.8%) drivers from roadways.

There were over 6,836 Level III Inspections conducted, removing 331 (4.8%) drivers from roadways.

What was the focus of CVSA Truck Inspections?

For 2021, CVSA truck inspections focused on violations related to hours of service and lighting, which resulted in identifying:

  • 1,203 hours of service violations or 41.5% of all driver out-of-service violations
  • 1,367 lighting violations or 14.1% of all vehicle out-of-service violations

What are the CVSA International Truck Inspection Results?

The results for inspections are summarized below and include out-of-service vehicle, CMV driver, seatbelt, hazardous materials/dangerous goods and motorcoach violations.

There were 9,691 vehicles placed out-of-service with the top violation being for braking systems (26.5%). The list below summarizes the remainder of recorded vehicle violations.

Out-of-service vehicle violations:

Vehicle violation categoryNumber of violationsPercent of out-of-service violations
Braking systems256426.5%
Tires and wheels180418.6%
Brake adjustment120312.4%
Cargo securement119212.3%
Lighting devices136714.1%

There were 2,898 drivers placed out-of-service with the top violation being for hours of service. The list below summarizes the remainder of recorded driver violations.

Driver out-of-service violations:

Driver violation categoryNumber of violationsPercent of out-of-service violations
Hours of Service1,20341.5%
Wrong Class License56519.5%
False Logs42714.7%
Other48216.6%
Suspended License1324.6%

Stay DOT compliant

Knowing what your CSA score is and how it affects your company and all of the requirements to pass inspections, whether it be for brake safety or suspension and steering, will allow you to stay compliant and plan your operations more efficiently.

All CNS services are geared toward keeping your trucking company safe and compliant so that you stay on the road and pass all truck inspections.

For more information, contact us at 888.260.9448 or info@cnsprotects.com.