Last chance to prepare for Roadcheck

By: Tom Bray

Publication: Transportation Safety Management Today

Date Posted: 09/02/2020

International Roadcheck begins Wednesday, September 9th, and runs through Friday, September 11th, so carriers that have not prepared for Roadcheck are down to the final days.

What preparations should a carrier undertake?

Here is a short list of what you can do to prepare and ensure your vehicles are ready:

  • Make sure all vehicles are current on maintenance inspections and maintenance;
  • Make sure all vehicles have a current annual inspection; and
  • Insist that drivers do pretrip, enroute, and post-trip inspections and report any discovered defects immediately.

Prepare the drivers

As driver compliance is the emphasis of International Roadcheck this year, it would be wise to put extra preparation into this area. As far as making sure drivers are ready, this involves reminding drivers:

  • What a roadside inspection involves, what will be expected of them during an inspection, and how to conduct themselves during an inspection;
  • That they must have their credentials with them and verify that they are valid (license and medical card if a non-CDL driver); and
  • That their hours-of-service records must be up-to-date and they must know how to present them to an officer.

Hours-of-service records

When it comes to presenting hours-of-service records to the officer, the situation will vary depending on the driver’s specific situation. Drivers using electronic logging devices will need to know:

  • What must be presented to the officer (display only, or display and the ability to transfer data if requested);
  • How to present the required information (and transfer it); and
  • What supporting materials are required (user’s guide, transfer instructions, malfunction instructions, blank logs, etc.).

A driver that is using paper logs must be able to explain to the officer why he or she is using a paper log, rather than an electronic one. Common reasons include:

  • The driver is operating a vehicle older than model year 2000 (based on the VIN or engine serial number),
  • The driver’s ELD is currently malfunctioning,
  • The driver is involved in certain driveaway or towaway operations, or
  • The driver is operating a rental vehicle that was rented for eight days or less.

If the driver does not need to have logs, the driver will need to be able to explain to the officer why he or she does not have logs. Common reasons include that the driver is:

  • Using one of the short-haul exemptions that allow time records to be used in place of logs; or
  • Operating under one the exemptions that exempts the drivers from the hours-of-service regulations, such as operating under the terms of an emergency declaration, the agricultural exemption, or the utility service vehicle exemption.

Key to remember: Consistency makes Roadcheck a nonemergency situation. If you are doing all of the above on a regular basis, International Roadcheck will just be dates on your calendar, and not a big deal.

About the author
Tom Bray - Transportation Editor

Tom has been with J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc. since 2005. He brought with him an extensive background that includes years of experience in DOT compliance, policy development, driver human resources, driver training, training program development, CDL testing, claims management, and accident and injury prevention.

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