Conducting a pre-trip inspection on an 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer, or other large commercial truck is one of the most important things drivers can do to stay safe on the road and protect others from harm. Checking the tires, brakes, lights, and other systems is crucial to avoiding unexpected accidents, and it is a critical Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requirement.
Failure to conduct pre- and post-trip inspections could lead to severe injury or fatal accidents on the road. American Trucker magazine recently outlined some tips for ensuring trucks are safe before drivers head out on the road.
Keeping Up with Regulations
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has list of rules and regulations that are meant to keep both truckers and others on the road safe. Truck drivers and trucking companies have a responsibility to monitor official publications and government agencies for changes. Failure to keep up with the latest changes could mean missing out on important news, like the required adoption of Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs), the FMCSA’s Commercial Driver’s License Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse regulations, or Hours of Service changes made by the FMCSA.
Preparing for Change by Training
It’s important for trucking companies to invest in training that will prepare drivers for changes in the future, whether they are new regulations, technology, or other industry changes. A good example from American Trucker centers around the switch to Electronic Logging Device (ELD) technology. Many trucking companies dragged their feet when it came to implementing these devices, largely due to the hassle of training drivers on how to use the technology. Lack of training results in a lack of preparedness when changes roll out. Instead, trucking companies should invest in training and make sure drivers are comfortable with new technology and understand new regulations and how it may apply to them.
Using Technology to Help with Inspections
Technological advancements can help with accountability and even make pre- and post-trip inspections move more quickly and efficiently. Fleet owners and drivers are encouraged to embrace these technological solutions. Technology can also help trucking companies keep better track of every inspection, a record that becomes extremely important in the event of an accident.
The Danger of Complacency in Truck Inspections
Simply going through the motions or skipping out on a truck inspection entirely can be a deadly decision. Performing pre-trip inspections are critical to ensuring that commercial vehicles are prepared for the wear and tear that they will experience on the road ahead. When it comes to safety, truck drivers and trucking companies are on the hook, and they should never take chances that put people’s lives at risk.
The San Antonio truck accident attorneys at Ketterman Rowland & Westlund want everyone to be safe on the highways and roads in Texas. If you’ve been hurt in a crash caused by someone else’s negligence, our powerful team of attorneys can help you demand justice and fair compensation. For a free consultation, contact us today.
Douglas D. Ketterman is the originator and founder of Ketterman, Rowland & Westlund where he currently serves as President and Managing Shareholder. Douglas has extensive experience in handling all types of civil litigation. He graduated with honors from St. Mary’s School of Law in 1989 and has been Board Certified as a Specialist in Personal Injury Trial Law since 1998 by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.