Safety Tips

Everything You Need to Know About Operation Airbrake 2022

Robin Ingram
3 minutes

Operation Airbrake is Around the Corner

Approximately 30% of large truck accidents are due to brake failure. “Poorly maintained brake systems can reduce the braking capacity and stopping distance of large trucks and motorcoaches, which poses a serious risk to driver and public safety,” said CVSA President Capt. John Broers with the South Dakota Highway Patrol. “In those split-second emergency situations, the proper functionality of the brake systems on large commercial motor vehicles is crucial.” To reduce the number of road violations and accidents involving heavy-duty trucks, the CVSA is ramping up for their next scheduled Brake Safety Week taking place from August 21-27, 2022. Here is what truckers will need to know about the 2022 Brake Safety Week.

About Brake-Related Violations

The goal of Brake Safety Week is to identify and remove commercial motor vehicles that are cruising with violations to their brake systems. According to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), brake-related violations comprise the largest percentage of all out-of-service vehicle violations cited during roadside inspections; and according to last year’s three-day International Roadcheck data, brake systems and brake adjustment violations accounted for 38.9% of all vehicle out-of-service violations, the most of any category of vehicle violations. To address this problem, the CVSA will perform random inspections on big rigs throughout North America with hopes that drivers will perform vehicle maintenance prior to the week-long event and won’t be deemed unfit for the road.

What Inspections Will Occur

Inspection items will include a driver’s license; registration; low air warning device; pushrod travel; brake lining/drums; air loss rate (if leak is detected) and tractor protection system. Furthermore, inspectors will capture violation data during the pull-over such as on brake hose/tubing chafing (the focus this year) and missing, non-functioning, cracked or loose parts on the braking system. Additionally, they will “listen for audible air leaks around brake components and lines and ensure the air system maintains air pressure between 90-100 psi (620-690 kPa).”

CVSA’s Brake Hose and Tubing Tips

The CVSA is emphasizing the importance of brake system components by focusing on brake hose and tube maintenance. As such, they have offered brake hose and tubing tips for truckers to take advantage of prior to long-haul trips. Here are tips for truckers from the CVSA:

  1. Inspect brake hoses and tubing as part of your pre-trip and post-trip inspections.
  2. Report any issues in your driver vehicle inspection reports (DVIR).
  3. Look for brake hoses that are contacting steering, suspension, brake or other components, or the tires or frame.
  4. Listen for air leaks, identify the location of the leak, and make the necessary repairs before leaving.
  5. Brake hoses should not be kinked or improperly repaired.
  6. Air lines should not hang down and touch the tractor deck or frame.
  7. When you find air hoses or tubing contacting other components, check for abrasion wear, and protect, secure, or move the hose to prevent wear.
  8. If a hose or tubing is chafing and has caused a reduction in diameter or, on thermoplastic hoses, the secondary white color is visible, a violation exists.
  9. If a hose is worn so that the reinforcement ply is cut or abraded, this is an out-of-service condition and should be replaced immediately.
  10. Make sure all repairs are consistent with manufacturer’s requirements and guidelines

Brake Safety Week is coming near meaning inspectors will be on high alert. Make sure your brake systems are properly functioning and up to code. The CVSA offers resources to help educate drivers, mechanics and others on the importance of proper brake inspection, maintenance and operation. Click here to access those brake-related resources.

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