Daily Vehicle Inspection and Vehicle Maintenance Issues in Accident Reconstruction 2007-01-0722
Problems with commercial motor vehicle components such as service brakes, steering controls, lighting devices, reflectors, tires, coupling devices, and other equipment can lead to accidents. Following a collision, accident reconstructionists may be called upon to determine whether these conditions were present before the crash and whether they were a causative factor.
The paper gives an overview of current requirements of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR)(1) and Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) that are related to daily vehicle inspections and commercial vehicle maintenance.
Examples are presented to show how post-accident examinations detected vehicle deficiencies that were overlooked in the driver's vehicle inspection and/or fleet maintenance procedures. A discussion is included as to how such findings may be integrated into a reconstruction and cause analysis.
Suggestions are offered to promote safer motor carrier practices relevant to vehicle inspections and maintenance issues.