Pre-trip inspections for fleets prior to a long haul are not only a smart thing for every driver to do, it is actually a state and federal law requirement. The routine check can seem cumbersome, especially when on a tight delivery schedule, but they are in place not only for the driver’s safety but for all other drivers and passengers that share the road.
Given the responsibility to manage the vehicle and the amount of time a driver spends on the road, there is a great deal of exposure they have to lawsuits in the event of an unfortunate accident.
In order to avoid being found negligent, drivers need to spend about 30 minutes checking all systems and cargo before getting behind the wheel. All results are to be noted in the driver’s log and periodically reviewed by flight management.
With the inevitable parts issue that arise, the experienced technicians at Turn Key Truck & Auto in Murray, Utah can quickly diagnose the issue and get you back on the road.
Give a walk around to ensure there is no physical damage that should be taken care of immediately. This includes checking that the cargo is secure.
Scan for overall wear, this includes leaks, cracks, or fraying. Inspect all hoses and check your engine fan for any obstructions.
Test your parking and service brakes, making sure they are properly responsive to the foot pedal, and make certain pads are the proper thickness. Maintain all brake fluid levels to the manufacturer’s standards. Don’t overlook this detail, it is one of the most common reasons for vehicles to be out of service.
Check oil, fuel, coolant and power steering levels so that all meet regulation and are enough for the trip. Maintain wiper fluid levels as well. Make sure the dips sticks are in place and caps are secure on all compartments.
Examine all tires and spares for proper inflation and tread. Check for nails stuck in the tire or other debris in the grooves. Also, securely tighten all lugs to the wheels. Surprisingly, tires do come off during travel!
One of the most common equipment failures is with the lights. Most critically make sure headlamps are all working along with brake and emergency lights. Additionally, ensure all fuses and circuit breaks are working properly. Don’t forget to check all emergency equipment including reflective strips and flares.
Always inspect and lubricate steering axles, shock absorbers, and ball joints to keep them in proper working condition. Once in the cabin, check all mirrors, seatbelts and onboard gauges before starting your trip.
Think of the pre-trip inspection as an integral part of a driver’s job. Cutting corners, in the long run, doesn’t benefit anyway and actually puts the driver in more physical and legal risk. It is a responsibility that allows all on the road to safely reach their destinations, and keeps vehicles on the road longer and in better condition.