One In Hundred Trucks
Fatally Unfit To Travel
11 NOV – One out of a hundred trucks on the European roads is dangerously unfit to travel.
The data came as a result of latest ROADPOL Truck&Bus enforcement operation carried out for a week in October.
17 national member police forces took part in the campaign focused on the control of commercial goods and passenger transport. According to their feedback, 223.314 trucks and 113.437 buses were checked. During this control week 67.519 violations were found (trucks: 60.480, buses: 7.039). In 2070 times or almost 1% of the checks, the onward journey of the truck was considered too dangerous and the vehicles were apprehended until the proper condition of the truck or load had been restored.
The complaint rate was 22,81% for freight transport and 5,91% for buses. “For freight traffic, this means that one or more violations were found in almost 1 in 4 trucks checked. This shows that freight traffic represents a major risk to road safety and that monitoring is essential. Тhe high complaint rate also reflects the very high standard of training in heavy traffic controls European police officers have”, says ROADPOL Operational Working Group secretary Henk Jansen from the Police in the Netherlands. Most of the offences were found in the areas of speed (11.565), technical offences (3.307), seat belts and other safety restraints (4.255). In 3.307 cases (3.232 trucks, 75 buses) serious technical defects were found. 1.583 trucks (< 12 tons), 519 trucks (> 12 tons) and 152 buses were found with overweight.
A serious amount of driving and rest times violations were detected as well as plain tachograph fumbling. 8.277 drivers (trucks 7.808, buses 469) offended against Europe-wide valid social regulations, meaning they drove their vehicle for longer than legally allowed without complying the mandatory breaks. 6.675 times the prescribed tachographs were not properly managed. Manipulations of digital tachographs were detected in 260 cases. “Fumbling with the settings of the tachograph or even manipulating those takes on larger forms every year. The reason for this type of fraud might be the sustained competitive pressure in this still-growing industry. The financial benefits for transporters may be large, but the risks for road safety are greater”, urged Jansen. According to him, due especially to driver fatigue, collisions can occur with serious consequences, not only for the driver of the truck or bus himself, but also for other road users.
Unfortunately, 199 drivers were also found taking part in road traffic under the influence of alcohol, as well as 53 drivers under the influence of drugs. Many of these violations (such as speed, insufficient load securing, driver fatigue and technical defects of the vehicles) are often the main causes of serious collisions and must be countered by controls on freight traffic.
In addition to the punishment of violations, the drivers are informed by clarifying discussions on the spot of the dangers of insufficient securing of load, not using seat belt, fatigue due to exceeding of driving times or the constantly increasing problem of distraction at the wheel by e.g. use of mobile phones or other electronic devices.
This time the checks in 7 countries (Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Finland, France, Romania and Slovakia) took place in collaboration with the European Labor Authority (ELA). Read more here.
The next ROADPOL Truck & Bus operation will take place from 13th to 19th February 2023. (See our 2023 Wall Planner here)