Post-trip inspections are a critical aspect of fleet safety, as an array of issues can arise when a vehicle is in service. The only way to ensure that a vehicle is truly in proper working order is through detailed, routine inspection.
Combining post-trip inspections with pre-trip inspections allows fleets to ensure that their vehicles haven’t taken on any significant wear and tear during their service that may impede quality on the next trip.
Pre- and post-trip inspections can save carriers money by reducing downtime, roadside repairs, fines received from regulatory bodies, and incidents of towing.
A post-trip inspection is an examination of a fleet vehicle for faults, defects, and damages. This inspection takes place when a driver finishes their shift. Post-trip inspections are an integral component of fleet safety. They are also legally required under The Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR). If an issue with a fleet vehicle is found during a post-trip inspection, the maintenance shop can be made aware of the problem in a timely manner, potentially allowing them to fix it in time for the vehicle to return to service without interruption.
Under Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, carriers must make sure drivers examine their vehicles for faults and damages before and after each shift.
If an issue is found, it must be written up in a Daily Vehicle Inspection Report (DVIR) and fixed before the vehicle goes back into service. DVIRs can be either paper or electronic.
A pre-trip inspection is meant to be a diligent check of the fleet vehicle, load, and trailer if applicable. The inspection is done to make sure that the vehicle is in proper working condition and the load is safe before hitting the road.
Any serious issues or damages that are discovered during the pre-trip inspection must be fixed before the vehicle is cleared to leave. A pre-trip inspection generally only takes between 10 and 15 minutes. During a pre-trip inspection, drivers are also responsible for ensuring that any previous issues that were identified by the vehicle’s previous driver—in their post-trip inspection—are now resolved.
According to the Department of Transportation’s regulation 396.13, “before driving a motor vehicle, the driver shall:
Post-trip inspections have been a requirement under DOT for a long time. However, during DOT audits, failure to prepare a post-trip inspection report is one of the most frequently cited critical violations in the United States. Drivers always need to conduct post-trip inspections. But they don’t always have to write up a DVIR. DOT regulation 49 CFR 396.11 stipulates that drivers don’t need to write up a report for their inspection if “no defect or deficiency is discovered by or reported to the driver.”
The same regulation outlines that if an issue is found it must be documented and that “the report must identify the vehicle and list any defect or deficiency discovered by or reported to the driver which would affect the safety of operation of the vehicle or result in its mechanical breakdown.”
When an issue with a fleet vehicle is found during a pre-trip inspection, a DVIR report needs to be drafted and submitted. Trailers also must be included in DVIRs when an issue is identified.
A DVIR has to contain an identification of the vehicle (such as its license plate number), a list of any damages or issues that could cause a breakdown or affect the vehicle’s safety, and space for three signatures.
DVIR reports must also cover at a minimum:
When problems arise during an inspection, fleets must address them before the vehicle can return to service.
According to the FMCSA, if a problem is identified during a post-trip inspection, “carriers must repair any defect or deficiency before the vehicle is dispatched again, and certify on the original driver vehicle inspection report that the defect or deficiency has been repaired or that repair is unnecessary.”
The driver who prepared the DVIR is required to sign it. If no issues are noted, this is the only signature necessary.
If a problem is detected, then a mechanic must sign the DVIR and note either that the vehicle has been fixed or that repairs were not necessary. In addition, if an issue is found, the next driver of the vehicle has to sign off on the previous post-trip inspection’s DVIR.
Carriers have a responsibility to keep records. The original DVIR has to be kept on file for three months after it is prepared. Drivers are not required to carry records in the vehicle.
Commercial motor vehicles that carry passengers must submit a DVIR report after every trip. These rules apply in all situations and there are no exceptions, even if no issues or damages are reported or found by the driver.
For all other commercial vehicles, they must only submit a report if an issue occurs if the driver reports an issue with the potential to affect the safe operation of the vehicle.
Single-vehicle operations are not required to submit DVIRs.
Pre- and post-trip inspections are crucial for fleet safety and legally mandated.
When drivers perform solid pre-trip inspections, it ensures that fleet vehicles do not go out on the road with existing issues.
When effective post-trip inspections are completed, the maintenance team has enough time to address the identified problem and fix it before the vehicle goes back into service. This saves your entire team downtime, thereby enhancing your bottom line.
Dispatch software is a lifesaver when it comes to organizing your dispatch process and keeping operations streamlined. It offers a variety of features that make daily procedures so much easier, from fleet tracking to reports that help businesses make decisions. What features does dispatch software offer, and how do these features benefit fleets? We will break this down for you.
It is easy to assign and monitor jobs with dispatch software because it uses fleet tracking. Fleet tracking allows you to assign jobs to crews in the field. If you need a lead technician for a job, it’s simple to attach that lead tech to any job you need. You can even sort jobs based on their status, whether they’re one-time, recurring, or multi-day, or based on urgency.
When workers finish jobs, they can mark the job as complete on their end. This way, you can know when each job concludes and when your technician moves on to their next task.
Back and forth calls between technicians and managers are no longer a problem. With dispatch software, you simply input the job you want your technicians to address. Your technicians access it from their phones and know what to do from there. When they’re done, they can mark it complete and view their next job right away. They can track their time, update their schedules, and input notes all while on the go. Everything you need to know will be on your screen when you need to know it, no need to track the information down.
Dispatch software can improve your business’s customer service reputation in a variety of ways. Firstly, GPS tracking allows for route optimization software, which gets your technicians to their destinations quickly and efficiently. No more late technicians making your customers wait. Furthermore, dispatch software allows you to assign technicians to customers they already know, building an improved relationship with your business. And with all of your customer information in one place, it’s easy to respond to disputes and issues in a timely and personal manner.
All of your client and order information is available in a field service CRM that details everything you need to know about your customers and the jobs you’ve done for them.
Azuga offers state-of-the-art dispatch software that your business is sure to benefit from every single day. These benefits will improve your fleet’s daily operations, boost customer service, and maximize productivity among your workers. These features and more bring your fleet to its maximum potential, allowing you to focus on making important decisions to help the business grow and thrive. Find out everything you can do with dispatch software by trying out a free demo today. You’re certain to be impressed with the improvements.
A multi-drop route planner is a process that plans a route for a driver to make more than two deliveries in multiple locations. It uses vehicle routing software to collect and analyze thousands of data points and determine the best delivery route. This route planning software can plan, re-route, and reschedule without causing any danger to the driver, environment, or business. It considers many factors, such as the number of distribution centers, warehouses, or residential areas a driver has to visit, resource availability, and driver safety.
The route optimization software tracks the vehicle while factoring in when deliveries need to arrive. Of course, a human being should ensure that everything has been planned out properly, but the process should be automatic. Both this person and the system should look at distances, travel time, and fuel consumption.
Once a route is set, the route optimization software compiles data to choose the best vehicle and driver depending on the delivery. It uses data based on the route and the client’s needs. At this point, it also considers the driver’s hours and weather conditions to determine how much time is needed. These systems need to work in real-time to ensure that managers and clients can connect with up-to-date information.
There are various benefits to multi-drop route planning. It maximizes productivity, keeps fuel costs low, promotes driver safety, and helps businesses stay compliant with federal driver hour regulations. Your business will save money by using its drivers effectively and not using as much fuel.
If you’re looking for this software, you don’t need to search any further! Azuga’s route optimization software allows for multiple stops. It provides the best routes based on historical data, traffic conditions, weather conditions, and machine learning that helps it create the best routes for you in real-time. See what you can do with route planning software by trying out a demo today!
If you manage a fleet, you probably already understand the delicate dance that is fleet dispatching. If not, you may not realize just how crucial this process is to the success of any fleet-based business.
Simply put, fleet dispatching is the process by which commercial fleet drivers are sent out into the field to make deliveries, service customers, and handle other business-related tasks. But it involves so much more than simply telling drivers, “you go there.” Good fleet dispatching may also involve considerations for traffic conditions, road hazards, driver skill sets, customer preferences, and onboard equipment. When done correctly, it’s a skillful juggling act that helps a business reach its daily goals. When poorly handled, it can be a disaster for all concerned.
A fleet dispatcher is a person in charge of scheduling and arranging dispatch for a commercial fleet. Small fleets may have a single dispatcher to manage all calls, while larger enterprise fleets may employ an entire team.
A fleet dispatcher must clearly understand schedules and routes, job proficiencies, fuel management, fleet maintenance, and regulations related to hours of service and other fleet compliance issues. A good fleet dispatcher knows the drivers in the fleet well and can anticipate their scheduling needs and which jobs they are most suited to handle. Fleet dispatchers must be masters of communication and have elite organizational skills.
Fleet dispatching is as much an art as a science, and it can be overwhelming at times. The best way to support the fleet dispatchers on your team is to give them tools and technology that make the job easier. Fortunately, Azuga offers the answers to all of your fleet dispatching conundrums.
Our GPS Fleet Tracking software can keep track of all the vehicles in your fleet along with large equipment and other assets. Dispatchers can use this information to see which vehicles are nearby when a job pops up. What’s more, we offer top-notch route optimization tools to help guide drivers around road construction, accidents, and other hazards that might prevent them from getting to their destination on time. We can even help you schedule routine maintenance, promote road safety, and automatically deliver dispatch notifications to drivers in the field.
Learn about all the ways Azuga Fleet can help your commercial fleet stay productive and efficient while simplifying maintenance schedules and creating a culture of safety on the road. Schedule an Azuga demo today!