Brake Safety Week is an annual campaign held by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) to raise awareness of the importance of proper brake inspection, maintenance, and operation. This year’s Brake Safety Week will be held from August 20-26, 2023, and the focus area will be brake lining/pad violations. This campaign is not to be confused with DOT Week or Operation Safe Driver Week, which happened earlier this year.
Brake Safety Week Overview:
- When: Sunday, August 20 through Saturday, August 26, 2023
- Where: Across the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
- Focus: Brake lining/pad violations
What is a brake lining/pad violation?
A brake lining/pad violation is any condition that could cause the brakes to fail. This could include worn or damaged linings/pads, loose or corroded hardware, or air leaks in the brake system. Brake lining/pad violations are one of the most common brake-related violations found during roadside inspections.
If your commercial vehicle is inspected and found to have a brake lining/pad violation, you could be placed out of service. This means that you will not be allowed to drive your vehicle until the violation is corrected.
To avoid being placed out of service, it is important to make sure that your commercial vehicle’s brakes are in good working condition.
Why is brake safety important?
Proper brake function is essential for safe operation of a commercial motor vehicle (CMV). When brakes fail, it can lead to serious accidents, injuries, and even fatalities. In 2021, there were over 4,000 crashes involving CMVs that were attributed to brake failure.
What can truckers do to prepare for Brake Safety Week?
Truckers can help to ensure brake safety by conducting regular inspections of their vehicles and by following proper maintenance procedures. Here are some tips for truckers to prepare:
- Conduct a thorough inspection of your brakes before each trip. Check the condition of the linings/pads, hardware, and air lines.
- Have your brakes serviced by a qualified mechanic at least once a year.
- Be aware of the signs of brake failure, such as decreased braking power, squealing or grinding noises, and a spongy brake pedal.
- If you experience any problems with your brakes, pull over to the side of the road and have them repaired immediately.
What can be done during Brake Safety Week?
During Brake Safety Week, CVSA inspectors will be conducting roadside inspections of CMVs with a focus on brake lining/pad violations. Truckers can help to make the roads safer by being prepared for Brake Safety Week and by taking steps to ensure the proper maintenance of their brakes.
Here are some things that truckers can do during Brake Safety Week:
- Make sure your brakes are in good working order.
- Be aware of the signs of brake failure.
- Pull over to the side of the road if you experience any problems with your brakes.
- Cooperate with CVSA inspectors during roadside inspections.
- Report any brake-related violations to CVSA.
For more tips check out the CVSA’s 2023 Brake Safety Week flyer with 10 brake lining and pad tips for drivers/operators to avoid violations.