Commercial vehicle inspection blitz brings safety to the forefront, agencies together

Published on June 12, 2017

Nova Scotia Radio Operator Colleen Nesseth and Vehicle Compliance Director Raymond Beaton joined a team of inspection agencies during this month’s International Roadcheck put on by the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance.

©Christopher Gooding/The Citizen-Record

The 30th International Roadcheck saw a bit of a standstill at the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border.

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance [CVSA] compliance check is a 60-hour blitz-taking place all across North America. Beginning the first Tuesday of the month, for three days commercial transport vehicles were randomly chosen for compliance inspections. After 30 consecutive years it’s he worst kept secret in trucking, Nova Scotia Vehicle Compliance Director Raymond Beaton says.

“This is our chance for everyone to get together and show what we do,” Beaton said. “At any time during the day an inspector might decide to pull in a truck and do an inspection, so there is always that unknown for the industry to say ‘Oh geez, I could get checked today.’”

Commercial vehicles were directed into the scale-house lane off the TransCanada just after the Nova Scotia-New Brunswick border. Some commercial trucks were given the green-light to proceed while every now and then some were directed to pull into the parking yard for a random inspection by a number of participating agencies.

In North America the standards for commercial vehicles are consistent between the United States, Canada and Mexico. A truck inspected here in Amherst will be challenged to prove it’s following the same guidelines in Tijuana and all points in between. With over four million inspections done annually, getting randomly selected and to participate in the annual blitz does come with its benefits, if they pass.  

“If the trucks pass we put on an identifier, a decal , and if the trucks come across another inspection that decal grants them three months [pass from other inspection sites], unless we see a glaring issue,” Beaton said.

Aside from the inspections, the concerted effort offers a team-building opportunity not always available to the many partners involved in the commercial transport safety sector.

“It’s an opportunity to bring all of the staff together from across the province. They don’t see each other, but they’ll hear each other on the radio,” Colleen Nesseth, Radio Operator for the Nova Scotia Government, said. “It is definitely a team builder.”

Those partners at this year’s inspection included Alcohol, Gaming, Fuel and Tobacco Division of Service Nova Scotia, RCMP, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Transport Canada and The Dept. of Fisheries.