Resources Blog

4 Ways for Shippers to Survive International Road Check 2019

ShippersPublished on May 11, 2019

Why is June 4-6 one of the most popular times for carriers to take vacations? Hint: It’s not kids starting summer vacation.

Each June, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) designates a 72-hour period for “International Roadcheck.”

This three-day event is described as “the largest targeted enforcement program on commercial motor vehicles in the world.” Additional inspectors are distributed across major highways to conduct mostly Level I Inspections, a 37-step process examining both the vehicle and driver for violations.

Trucks that fail roadside inspections often get placed out of service, which leads to load delays and fines for the carrier.

During last year’s Roadcheck Week, 67,103 inspections were completed, and a whopping 21% of trucks failed and were put out of service. The focus for Roadcheck Week 2019 is steering and suspension, a critical component of keeping trucks safe while on the road.

Inspections are nothing new to carriers, but the higher frequency is what makes Roadcheck Week a big impact the freight market.

“Aside from the increased inspections, we are not doing anything differently than any other day. The inspections performed during International Roadcheck are the same inspections that are conducted the day before International Roadcheck starts and the day after it concludes, as well as any other day of the year.”

Chief Jay Thompson, President of the CVSA

How does Roadcheck Week impact capacity?

The increased number of inspections makes it a perfect time for a carrier to get off the road and take a well-deserved vacation. Even for carriers with robust safety programs and full legal compliance, the higher likelihood of being stopped for inspection adds inconvenience and some additional risk to the workday.

In addition, through potentially increased violations, more carriers will be placed out of service, further reducing trucks on the road. These factors make June 4-7 one of the most (if not the most) capacity-restricting periods outside of consumer holidays.

Here are four tips to ensure your supply chain runs smoothly through Roadcheck Week:

  1. Move your time-sensitive freight to ship sooner or later. Do you have high-profile or time-sensitive freight? Consider moving those loads to the previous or following week. It’s possible for even your best carriers to get significantly delayed while loaded with your product. Avoid headaches ahead of time by being a scheduling ninja.
  2. Avoid the spot market until June 10. Spot market rates will increase due to an imbalance of supply and demand as well as industry perception that rates should be higher. This is likely to last through the weekend. Save money and avoid letting freight hit the spot market until the following Monday.
  3. Convert pickup and delivery appointments to windows when possible. 37-point inspections take time. Even carriers that pass with flying colors can be delayed during transit. Converting appointments to windows will give carriers additional flexibility and set correct expectations with facilities.
  4. Be compassionate. Even the best carriers can fail inspection. The safest, highest-performing, and most prepared carrier can have invisible equipment mishaps. A little empathy not only relieves stress but will go a long way toward building carrier loyalty. There is nothing better than loyal carriers hauling your freight!

Shippers – want to get ahead of Roadcheck Week 2019? Contact your account representative. To learn more about shipping with Convoy, visit the shipper hub, or contact us at (206) 971-1237.

Carriers – to learn more about hauling with Convoy, visit the carrier hub, or contact us at (206) 202-5645.


Amy Beth Frye

Amy is senior content marketing manager at Convoy. Prior to Convoy, she served in marketing or editorial at Hyatt Hotels, Coyote Logistics, Groupon, and The Knot weddings magazine. Amy received her journalism degree from Indiana University and digital publishing certificate from Columbia University. She lives in Chicago with her husband Luke and their black lab, Herbert.
View more articles by Amy Beth Frye