09/20/2013 05:52 EDT | Updated 11/20/2013 05:12 EST

Commercial Vehicle Inspection: Edmonton Worse Than Calgary During Recent Blitzes

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EDMONTON - Edmonton has topped Calgary when it comes to the number of commercial vehicles that flunked a recent inspection blitz.

Police in Edmonton say less than a third of the 275 vehicles passed inspection when they were pulled over from Sept. 17 to 19.

Nearly half of the drivers were ordered to get immediate repairs in order to be allowed to drive away.

Sgt. Kerry Bates says Calgary fared better during a recent inspection blitz there, where he says the portion of commercial vehicles taken out of service was 10 per cent lower.

Bates says one of the more common infractions occurs with a mandatory device that stops a trailer if it becomes unhitched.

Bates says inspectors have been finding that the batteries on the devices are often dead.

He said many of the same personnel were involved in both the Edmonton and Calgary inspections. He said several blitzes are done each year, but he didn't know how the two cities compared in earlier inspections.

"Whether it's a case of complacency on the part of a driver that uses the same vehicle every day so he doesn't bother to check, it's hard to say," Bates said about why so many vehicles were found with safety infractions.

He said other possible explanations include a lack of availability of personnel to maintain vehicles, or with larger companies, a failure to educate drivers.

Many of the problems occurred with smaller, mid-size vehicles rather than semis, Bates said. Often, they were with companies that do seasonal work, such as construction or landscaping companies.

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