Conducting a five-day inspection blitz in late July, the Motor Carrier Division of the Oregon Department of Transportation placed nearly one-fourth of the truck drivers stopped out of service for safety violations, the department reported.
Enforcement officers and local police conducted about 1,200 commercial driver inspections, placing nearly 300 out of service from July 22 to July 26 at six points along Interstate 84 and Interstate 82.
The national average rate for drivers placed out of service is 6.2 percent, according to the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance following Roadcheck 2007.
The most common violations in the Oregon blitz were related to logbooks or driver qualifications, the department reported.
“Although the majority of trucks and drivers operating on Oregon’s highways are safe and professional, these inspections are important in helping identify those that are not and vital in helping keep Oregonians safe,” David McCane, ODOT Motor Carrier Investigations’ safety and federal programs manager, stated in a press release.
Oregon inspectors handed out brochures about driver fatigue and safety belts during the inspection crackdown.
State officials are making sure commercial drivers comply with out-of-service orders.
Land Line reported May 10 that a new law signed by Gov. Ted Kulongoski boosts fines – formerly in the range of $1,100 to $2,750 – to a range of $2,750 to $11,000 for those who don’t comply with out-of-service orders.
The July inspections in Oregon were separate from the state’s participation in the annual Roadcheck program administered by CVSA.
During Roadcheck inspections June 5-7, Oregon inspectors placed 19 percent of drivers out of service, still well above the national average of 6.2 percent.
– By David Tanner, staff writer