We may complain about different rulings of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, but the emphasis on highway safety remains critical. You can have outstanding, well-trained, experienced drivers who virtually eliminate any possibilities of driver error. You can have excellent weather and road conditions with very sparse traffic on the open road. Yet poor truck maintenance can lead to dangerous accidents and tragedy.
Common problems at the root of many truck crashes are often preventable through regular maintenance with a qualified mechanic. These can include:
- Brake failures and parking brake failures
- Brakes that are out of adjustment or oil-contaminated
- Steering component problems
- Coupling device failures
- Improperly installed hub assemblies
- Faulty or missing headlights, taillights or reflectors
- Worn or under-inflated tires
You can see when a headlight bulb is burned out or your tread is too low, but the intricacies of the engine needs professional inspection and care. Today’s engines combine top engineering efforts and well-made components. However, with all the moving parts in big rigs, any breakage or malfunction can endanger you. The failure of a critical part can result in the inability to stop, turn or keep control of the truck.
Regular maintenance checks with a certified, experienced truck mechanic help keep those parts running smoothly to prevent accidents. When engine parts and brakes are worn, preventative maintenance and replacement is mandatory to ensure your safety. We don’t have to tell you that FMCSA guidelines are strict on when and how maintenance should be completed and that compliance is required. When you’re hauling thousands of pounds, you don’t want to skip inspections and repairs.
Whatever steps you can take to reduce the risk of injury should be foremost in your mind throughout the year. In addition, proper maintenance is simply a good business decision: you can improve your fuel efficiency as well as decrease your trucks’ downtime for preventable repairs.