We are all in a hurry to get where we need to be, and that goes even more so for those who are transporting tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise to a destination. We do what we can to make sure that we get to our destinations as quickly and safely as possible without any unnecessary delays, such as getting pulled over. So, we watch our speed, we follow road signs, and we take care of ourselves to make sure that we are well rested.
However, there is more we can do in order to avoid getting pulled over for those dreaded, time killing roadside inspections or speed up the process if an inspection is just ultimately unavoidable.
- Make sure your truck is well lit. Always. Having a tail light out on a tractor trailer is not something that you can tell an inspector you are going to get fixed this weekend. You don’t have that luxury. Before you take off, check your headlights, brake lights, and your blinkers. This is especially relevant if you live in a colder climate where salt is frequently used on the road to prevent ice build up, which can also damage electrical connections. However, travelling through Florida doesn’t mean you don’t have to worry about electrical malfunctions. Moisture and electricity don’t exactly mix well either. Just save yourself the stress and time and check your lights before you leave and every so often while on the road.
- Keep it clean. A clean trailer doesn’t just make it easier to spot problems before they become detrimental to your truck, it also means you are less likely to get stopped for an inspection. This goes for both the external appearance of your truck as well as inside the cab. Many inspectors may stop you and take a peek at how your cab is kept. If it’s tidy and up to their standards they might just wave you off. Getting your truck washed every 45 to 60 days should be effective.
- Grin and bear it. Andy Blair, a 26 year DOT inspector, told fleetowner.com that many inspectors don’t have a quota for citations, but they have a quota for inspections. That being said, an inspector might pull you over, fully expecting you let you go on your way. However, if you have a lousy attitude, he won’t hesitate to write you up a citation. If you get pulled over for an inspection, play nice, especially if know for a fact that you have nothing to worry about.
Time is of the essence, but if and when you get stopped for an inspection, making the process go as quickly and smoothly as possible will save yourself and the inspector time and frustration.