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Brake Safety Week calls attention to brake violations

Truckers in Wyoming will want to know that the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has set its annual Brake Safety Week for September 16 to 22. This inspection spree is meant to ensure that truckers and all drivers of commercial motor vehicles are maintaining their brakes according to the manufacturer's guidelines. Improperly installed or maintained brakes can increase stopping distance and endanger public safety.

Previous CVSA inspection sprees show that brake-related violations are not uncommon. They made up the majority of violations during the 2017 International Roadcheck, for instance. During last year's brake inspection spree (which was held over a single day), 14 percent of CMVs that were stopped were placed out of service. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration found that where braking capacity was critical, trucks were 50 percent more likely to have bad brakes.

During Brake Safety Week, CVSA-certified enforcement personnel will be randomly stopping CMVs and conducting Level I inspections. These 37-step inspections are the most comprehensive and cover both driver- and vehicle-related violations. Common issues can include worn linings and pads, defective rotors and missing or loose parts.

Additionally, inspectors will check for braking efficiency wherever performance-based brake testing equipment is used. At the same time as the inspections, law enforcement officials will strive to educate drivers, mechanics, and fleet owner-operators on the importance of functioning brakes.

In the event that bad brakes contribute to a trucking accident, victims may be able to file a claim against the responsible trucking company. The victim may also benefit from consulting with an experienced attorney. Personal injury lawyers may be able to bring in experts to investigate the crash and explain how the brakes were malfunctioning. They can also negotiate on the victim's behalf for an informal settlement and litigate if one cannot be reached.

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