Industry Insights: 2021 Q1

Industry Insights: 2021 Q1

International Roadcheck is Set for May – This Year’s Focus on Increased Safety Enforcement

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance announced that this year’s International Roadcheck is set for May 4-6. This year’s event includes participation by FMCSA, the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators, Transport Canada, and Mexico’s Ministry of Communications and Transportation and its National Guard. The three-day event will focus on stepping up enforcement on commercial motor vehicle lighting and hours of service.

“International Roadcheck also aims to raise awareness of the North American Standard Inspection Program and the essential highway safety rules and regulations in place to keep our roadways safe,” said CVSA President Sgt. John Samis with the Delaware State Police.


During the Roadcheck, inspectors from Mexico, Canada, and the U.S. will ensure the following vehicle systems are within regulation parameters:
• Vehicle’s brake systems • Steering mechanisms
• Cargo securement • Suspensions
• Coupling devices • Tires
• Driveline/driveshaft components • Van and open-top trailer bodies
• Driver’s seat • Wheels
• Exhaust systems • Rims
• Frames • Hubs
• Fuel systems • Windshield wipers
• Lighting devices
Inspections of motorcoaches, passenger vans, and other passenger-carrying vehicles will also check the following:
• Emergency exits
• Electrical cables
• Engine systems
• Battery compartments
• Seating

Inspectors will also check the driver’s operating credentials, hours-of-service documentation, seat belt usage, and for alcohol or drug impairment. According to the CVSA’s increased focus on enforcement, a driver will be placed out of service if an inspector discovers driver-related out-of-service conditions. In addition, critical vehicle inspection item violations, as outlined in the North American Standard Out-of-Service Criteria, require that a vehicle be placed out of service.

“The International Roadcheck is a data collection effort,” Samis said. “The inspections conducted during the three days of International Roadcheck are no different from the inspections conducted any other day of the year.”

In consideration of COVID-19, the CVSA promises that inspectors will make every effort to get vaccine shipments to their destination in a timely manner. “COVID-19 vaccine shipments will not be held up for inspection, unless there is an obvious serious violation that is an imminent hazard,” CVSA said.


Will Capacity be Stretched to a Breaking Point?

A survey of leading logistics executives taken in January showed some unfortunate figures regarding transport availability, warehouse capacity, and prices sweeping the industry so far in 2021.

According to the Logistics Managers’ Index report, a barometer of change for several areas of the supply chain, “capacity continues to contract and prices continue to increase across the board. The amount of inventory that is stuck in the system trying to reach destinations is partly responsible for the lack of transportation and warehouse capacity, which is leading to higher prices.”

“Due to constricted capacity and high inventory levels, it would appear that as firms increase the amount of inventory they’re holding, the cost of doing so is increasing at an increasing rate,” the report read. “This combined with tight capacity and high prices contribute to the increasing rate of growth detected in this month’s LMI.”

The report pointed to a “glut of traffic currently sitting in U.S. ports” and companies “still having difficulty digging out of the inventory and supply chain backlogs built up in the early parts of the pandemic” as the reasons.

If current conditions continue as they have been, and consumer demand continues to grow with the rollout of the vaccine and the possibility of another government stimulus, supply chains are expected to attempt to take on more inventory, causing warehouse capacity to decline further and inventory costs to increase still.


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