A pre-trip inspection by a driver of tractor trailer is required by Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations.  A pre-trip inspection should be done to ensure the tractor trail is operating safely and there are no problems with the tractor trailer.  Prior to operating the vehicle, a Driver Vehicle Inspection Report should be filled out and signed by the driver.  If there are defects, those defects need to be immediately addressed by a mechanic and mechanic is required to sign and verify the Inspection Report.

According to several experts, a pre-trip inspection of a tractor trailer can take as long as 1 to 2 hours and requires the driver to visually and physically inspect the engine compartment, cab and the trailer.  Below is a list of the areas that a driver should inspect prior to driving starting with the front of the vehicle:

·       Windshield Wipers

·       Engine Compartment

·       Front Suspension

·       Front brake

·       Cab Area

·       Fuel Tank Area

·       Coupling System

·       Front of Trailer

·       Rear Tractor Wheels

·       Suspension

·       Tractor Brakes

·       Rear of Tractor

·       Side of Trailer

·       Trailer Wheels

·       Suspension

·       Trailer Brakes

·       Rear of Trailer

·       Signal, Brake and Clearance Lights