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As electric vehicles appear more and more to be the future of transportation in America, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has created a new process for the analysis and inspection of autonomous commercial vehicles.
When announcing the Enhanced Commercial Motor Vehicle Inspection Program, the CVSA released a statement which mentioned how roadside inspections and weigh-station environments are difficult for autonomous vehicles: “They are not compatible with today’s roadside enforcement inspections, which rely on assistance from the driver.”
Due to this issue, the new inspection program now includes a stricter inspection standard and procedure (for carriers operating autonomous vehicles). Personnel who will be conducting the inspections will also undergo a mandatory 40-hour CVSA training course and final exam for certification.
Currently, the driver conducts an inspection before each departure, but the new program will implement CVSA-trained motor carrier personnel who will conduct the ‘Enhanced CMV Inspection Procedure’ (on selected automated driving systems). This could result in more in-transit inspections at a dictated interval throughout an average trip for autonomous commercial vehicles.
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While on the road, vehicles with automated driving systems will be required to communicate directly with law enforcement to state the departure of origin and inspection. The report will include the functionality of automated driving systems. Automated driving system vehicles will then bypass fixed inspection sites. Any truck or commercial motor vehicle combination that fails the Enhanced CMV Inspection Procedure at the point of dispatch must not be on the road until a re-inspection and repair is carried out.
CVSA President Major Chris Nordloh when speaking with the TDPS (Texas Department of Public Safety) stated: “This enhanced inspection procedure for driverless commercial motor vehicles will ensure the highest level of safety and provide law enforcement with the information they need to be confident about the roadworthiness of autonomous trucks operating on our roadways.”
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