recently conducted a one-day, statewide inspection of commercial motor vehicles, finding enough violations to place more than one-quarter of the trucks out of service.
During “Operation Air Brake,’’ state troopers, along with municipal police officers and members of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, inspected 1,444 commercial motor vehicles. A total of 317 vehicles and 60 drivers were placed out of service.
Locally, Troop M, which covers Bucks, Lehigh and Northampton counties, conducted 37 inspections; put 13 vehicles and five drivers out of service; and issued 41 citations and 82 warnings. Also, Troop K, which covers Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties, conducted 66 inspections; put nine vehicles and three drivers out of service; and issued 51 citations and 92 warnings.
“As Pennsylvania’s roadways become more crowded, it’s important that everyone safely share the road and ensure that the equipment, especially brakes, are operating in excellent condition,” State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan said. “We are committed to reducing the number of crashes that involve commercial motor vehicles by putting those that that are not safe out of service.”
The enforcement effort, held across the state on Sept. 14, found at least one driver or vehicle safety deficiency in 67 percent of the inspections conducted. Officers issued 1,103 traffic citations and handed out 2,074 written warnings.
“Under ideal conditions, the braking capacity of trucks is twice as far as cars,’’ Noonan said. “When large vehicles have brakes that are out of adjustment, it reduces their ability to stop. This increases the risk to other motorists on the road and the driver of the vehicle itself.”
“Operation Air Brake” is part of a national Brake Safety Awareness Week campaign aimed at improving vehicle brake safety throughout North America. Officers conduct roadside inspections and educate drivers, mechanics and others on the importance of proper brake inspection, maintenance and operation.