Fleet maintenance

Paper-Based DVIR Procedures Are Getting a Facelift with Technology

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For fleet managers like yourself, daily inspection reports are just another part of the reality of running your business. However, they don't have to be nearly the headache that they once were proven to be. In recent years, new tools have arisen to provide you with the option of setting aside your paper-based process in favor of something a bit more in keeping with today’s technologically driven landscape.

After all, daily vehicle inspection reports (DVIR) are already a required element of commercial vehicles and provide necessary protections for both your business and, by extension, your drivers. So, considering the indispensable nature of DVIR, why should you and your drivers be forced to deal with an archaic way of doing things if a better option already exists?

That’s the question your industry is currently facing, as the rise of an electronic-based alternative to traditional DVIR — coined eDVIR— has challenged the entire framework with which inspection reports are created, completed and submitted. As news spreads, the battle of paper-based DVIR versus eDVIR is undoubtedly going to rage on.

The only question that remains is which side of the debate you and your company will be on when all is said and done. Some veterans of your industry may balk at technology essentially stepping in to revolutionize such a critical part of your business, but others will see this as an opportunity to streamline part of your drivers’ routine. But before you settle on your own perspective, we’ll take you through both DVIR and its digital counterpart so that you can make an informed decision.

DVIR EXPLAINED


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So, before we elaborate on the latest in DVIR, it’s time for a quick refresher. Over time, it’s possible that inspection reports have become second nature, but don’t let that lead to complacency. Remember that a daily record — conducted by each driver and of every vehicle — is a requirement of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

So, while your employees may not want to take the time to keep updated with this process, it is quite literally mandatory by law. Until a report is ready, you cannot be certain that a vehicle is safe to hit the road, and that might open the door for culpability if an incident does occur out there. It’s simply not worth the risk to allow a driver to head out without having at least the safety net of a DVIR to provide the minimum amount of protection you need to have peace of mind about each trip.

At its most basic level, an inspection report should answer the fundamental questions raised about the condition of a vehicle. For example:

  • Do key parts like the windshield wipers and lights function properly?

  • Are the tires in decent shape and properly inflated?

  • Does the vehicle have any leaks, defects or other items that require attention before the trip begins?

The full list of concerns is quite exhaustive, but the point stands that the level of detail on a DVIR runs deep. It has to, in order to serve its purpose as both legal document and safety precaution.

Whenever a driver takes a vehicle out without one, he or she is — knowingly or not — putting the long-term reputation of your business on the line. Sure, it’s easy to write DVIR off as a mere formality and breeze through the steps without much care or regard for accuracy, especially when you’re burdened with having to fill out and submit paper copies of each day’s reports.

Then, as the fleet manager, it’s your job to try and make sense of it all. Of course, some drivers are going to waive their DVIR just so that they can keep up.

But vehicular collisions occur every day. If an incident does occur, it’s up to you to ensure that your company and its drivers have met at least the simplest requirements expected of them. That mean having an updated DVIR file, and such a prospect is far less headache-inducing if the records in question are of the digital variety, not the paper kind.

Before the technology to streamline this process was made readily available, it’s only natural that paper-based DVIR would reign supreme. In any case, we are in a new age. DVIR is clearly a key part of your business. So, if you must comply with regulations, there’s no reason why doing so has to be so convoluted. eDVIR may be the new kid on the block, but we’re willing to bet that you’ll hop aboard the digital train once you have a bit more information on hand.

GOING DIGITAL



At face value, the eDVIR process isn’t that much different than the traditional way of doing things. Drivers still complete and submit daily reports so that you can keep them on file. The inspection points themselves are largely the same, and the protections they provide have never been more pertinent to the long-term prospects of your business.

What does change — quite drastically, we might add — is how you complete and submit reports. With a fully digital system, drivers no longer need to deal with lengthy inspection forms. Instead, these can be customized to only include the fields you need or rearranged to suit your needs. Then, they are submitted instantaneously using a cloud-based interface, allowing managers like you access to inspection reports in real time.

We have already demonstrated that DVIR is a requirement of your business, and eDVIR at least makes it easy to open the lines of communication and stay in the know with your team.

Moreover, fully electronic inspection reports give you the chance to organize your DVIR records and streamline your processes on the back end. Piles of paperwork can become tiresome quickly, but eDVIR strips all of those concerns and streamlines this critical part of your business to the point that you won’t have to worry about a thing.

In the event that one of your drivers is involved in an accident or some other incident, electronic files will be far easier to access than the old paper forms.

After all, compliance is a real hot-button issue these days, and the last thing you want is for your DVIR files to be incomplete or out of date. eDVIR ensures that this doesn’t happen and that you’re prepared for any circumstances that may come your way.

You’ll even be able to run fully customized reports to uncover opportunities for growth or to identify trends within your business that can pinpoint ways to cut costs or otherwise boost productivity. Even without this added benefit, digital files should already minimize the amount of human errors present in eDVIR, leading to greater accuracy and a higher overall quality of work.

While it is only now starting to gain traction, eDVIR is fast becoming the standard-bearer in your industry. With so many administrative duties in your hands, we’re sure that you’ll be able to appreciate the beauty in the simplicity that is eDVIR. Cleaner inspection forms and real-time submissions alone are game-changers, long before you factor in the many ways in which eDVIR can serve your company better than traditional DVIR ever did.

Less hassle and more efficiency just for bringing your DVIR system into the modern age? That’s not a bad trade-off any way you look at it, but the real clincher for your company will likely be how eDVIR makes it so easy to satisfy regulation and maximize protections for all involved. This is a gift in and of itself, one which you would be wise to at least consider before retreating to the outdated system you know.

BENEFITS OF TECHNOLOGICAL UPGRADE

If you’re still on the fence about taking the leap into eDVIR, we’ve got you covered. Let’s briefly run through some of the most integral advantages of using this digital format instead of relying on paperwork.

  • Work faster: Because you can customize forms and automatically store and organize completed inspection reports, your drivers will able to log in, run through the inspection points they need to hit and get out without having to waste precious minutes fiddling with paperwork or risk losing the completed form before it’s ever turned in. The entire process is streamlined from top to bottom, and there’s no telling how much of a difference you’ll witness once you integrate eDVIR into your business. Time, as they say, is money. The resources you’ll save with this new process is easily among the best elements of it all.

  • Simplified reporting: Noticing a pattern here? eDVIR doesn’t only streamline — and thus expedite — the inspection process itself, but this same benefit extends to the reporting module as well. If your company is ever audited, you’ll need to be ready to present months’ worth of inspection reports. With digital copies, you’ll be able to access them at a moment’s notice. In fact, you can even customize specific reports based on your own parameters, saving you the time of having to sift through piles of paperwork just to (hopefully) identify what you’re looking for.

  • More open communication: Across the board, one of the most impactful ways in which technology has changed our world is in how we communicate. Case in point, with fully digital eDVIR, you can communicate with your drivers instantly. Any submitted inspection forms will be easily accessible, and the maintenance team can begin preparing to address any action items discovered during inspection. You can even submit photos through the system for further proof or clarification. Whereas you once had to wait until your driver returned to accept the report and finalize maintenance plans, you can now plan ahead and use your resources more strategically.

  • Fewer errors: Say goodbye to those days of having to decipher one of your driver’s handwriting or struggling to make sense of a completed inspection report. With eDVIR, it is so much easier to review a report and acknowledge next steps well before intervention is needed. In addition, the ability to customize forms keeps the reports lean and makes it far less likely that a driver will make a mistake. Human error is unavoidable to some degree, but now you can greatly reduce the chances of a major mistake slipping through the cracks. Such a mishap could damage your business and your reputation, if it goes unchecked. Don’t leave your company’s well-being to happenstance.

  • Incredible mobility: By now, we’ve acknowledged that eDVIR uses the cloud to upload and share information, but let’s emphasize it once more. This system, of course, works for either iOS or Android and on any mobile device, be it smartphone or tablet. Because your drivers travel all over the place, the need to access the system from anywhere is obviously much greater. Thankfully, eDVIR accommodates this, making it a breeze to log in no matter where you are.

FAREWELL TO PAPER




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Simply, eDVIR provides a host of benefits that could very well help your business function more smoothly and present the possibility for even more improvements ahead for your business. Though the technology itself is still relatively new, many companies like yours have already seen much success with it, crediting eDVIR for increased productivity, greater accuracy in their records and more accountability on the part of their drivers.

The inspection reports themselves may be digital, but the effect of this new process on business operations is very tangible indeed. Is it any wonder then why eDVIR continues to be heralded as the future of inspection reports? No matter what metric one turns to for success, eDVIR appears poised to facilitate it.

That’s why Whip Around has invested heavily in our eDVIR product. Our easy-to-use system allows complete autonomy and customization of the inspection process. Regardless of how you want to configure your inspection form, Whip Around can make it happen, saving you countless man-hours and ensuring that your drivers stay focused on the job at hand.

Anywhere you are, you’ll be able to manage inspection reports with the touch of a button. Imagine the flexibility of being able to access these DVIR from your mobile device, not to mention the detailed analytics that accompany such digital files.

You’re just one click away from finding a better way to manage your fleet. For more information on how Whip Around can help you, get started FREE today!

Are you still using paper DVIR forms?

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Business’s of all sorts in the United States have been transitioning to paperless documentation. This is not only to promote a green environment and save the planet, but in 2016 39% of businesses found that too much of their spending money was going toward unnecessary printing. We get it, you have been doing a fine job with the routine you have and change could just confuse things. The reality is, switching to digital DVIR forms will only make things easier and quicker for you and your staff.

PAPER CREATES PROBLEMS

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Paper is great when it comes to efficiency in small quantities, such as taking down a number or writing a quick reminder for yourself. When you are using it in large quantities for everyday uses however, it becomes extremely inefficient. A few reasons for this are:

  • Every paper document you file costs 5 dollars and an additional 20 dollars to have it found

  • If you need to reproduce a paper document it could cost up to 250 dollars

  • 7.5% of all paper documents are simply lost, which can cause some serious complications depending on its importance

AUTOMATING DVIR FORMS

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There are a number of ways that you can eliminate the use of paper in a business. When it comes to businesses in charge of fleets, a whole lot of paper is wasted because of all of the vehicle inspections that  are required each day. 

Drivers are also having to do more work than necessary because of these paper forms. By using a mobile application to automate your DVIR slips, you will:

  • Quicken the entire inspection process. Digital forms are easily accessible, they cannot get lost, you do not need to have a pen handy or spend time trying to retrieve one, and you can copy your name and ID information right from prior forms. Once the form is completed it will be saved directly into the database, avoiding any possibility for loss or the time it takes it to retrieve it if necessary.

  • Have less errors. If a driver is using their own handwriting the form can be difficult to read or understand. Both the driver and the office team have to be able to read the information on the form for reviews purposes and in the case that it needs to be passed on for maintenance.

  • Make the reporting process simpler. All fleet companies need to have easy access to their forms and proof of inspections as the FMCSA will require at least 3 months of DVIRS during an audit. Getting a low score on a review or audit can weigh heavily on your business. Digital forms are all saved in the cloud, making them easily accessible and legible when such an event takes place.

  • Faster communication for repairs. Reports on defects will be sent to the maintenance team as soon as they are documented. With the app connected to the driver’s mobile device, they will have the ability to take photos to fully communicate the issue.

  • The technology is designed to function on any smart mobile device. Whether the driver is using an iOS or Android device, they will be able to install the app on their smartphone or tablet so they can complete the electronic form from any location.

  • Have the option to create your own customized forms.Depending on the type of vehicle being used, it may require its own customized inspection form. Completing the wrong form could result in inadequate or missing information. If there is anything that needs to be included the form can be altered or another form can be attached to the file.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

If you have completed a DVIR form before, you know that it can be a big pain. Simplify your process and ensure that everything is being done properly and efficiently with eDVIR forms.

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Eliminate the hassles by using the optimal path that is digital ease. Times are changing and these tools are created to provide you with solutions that will eliminate your problems. Don’t shoot yourself in the foot, optimize your inspection process today.

5 Things Everyone should Know about Vehicle Inspection Software

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Managing your fleet may have its ups and downs, but what if you could implement one self-contained system that could decrease your workload, enhance your level of control and prioritize the safety of your drivers? We’re discussing, of course, vehicle inspection software. With a sophisticated design and a clear focus on maximizing efficiency, this is the fresh approach to running your daily vehicle inspections that you have longed for.

Above all else, today’s technology should be allowing you to work smarter, not harder, in how you serve your clients and operate your business. Now this exciting new tool helps you to do just that.

At Whip Around, we make it our mission to streamline daily vehicle inspections so that they start to become second nature. With everything that goes into running your business, you need the ability to devote every possible moment to how you can boost your quality of service as well as your bottom line.

With a software system governing the detailed vehicle inspection process, you won’t have to trouble yourself with the minutiae of each and every inspection. Rather, let this tool manage it for you. Moreover, vehicle inspection software comes complete with a host of attractive features that will leave you wondering why you didn’t adopt it earlier.

Of course, there is a chance that such a system is completely new to you. If so, here’s a quick rundown of the key benefits you will enjoy once you introduce vehicle inspection software into your business.

#1. YOU WILL SAVE TONS OF TIME

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No matter how successful your business is, how much experience you have or how expansive your team is, the one resource you’ll never be able to conjure more of is time. However, with the right strategy in place, you can eliminate many of the administrative practices that once ate away at your manpower.

One such example is those pesky forms that accompany each and every one of your vehicle inspections. While you once had to fill each one out by hand, our software can automate the entire process. In just minutes, you can have a fully customizable inspection form ready to go. Why deal with stacks of physical forms when you can consolidate everything into a sleek digital format?

It’s even mobile-friendly so that your team can use a smartphone or tablet while they work. These days, almost everyone has one, and if not, we heartily recommend your business invest in some mobile devices to truly live up to its unfulfilled potential.

Even if you aren’t sure where to start with creating a new form, we’ll give you a standard checklist to work from. It’s one of the best in the industry for pre-trip truck and trailer inspections, and you’ll have tons of options to create the ideal inspection for your fleet. You can even duplicate existing forms to save time on subsequent inspections. Ultimately, you’ll be able to cut out the hassle of having to construct a new form for each inspection.

Since you can eliminate all but your desired fields, that means you can have your drivers out on the road sooner than ever before. Don’t waste precious time getting caught up in substandard filing systems or sticking to outdated protocol when a better way is right in front of you.

There’s no reason you should have to wade through the wasteful repetition of inspection forms, at least not with vehicle inspection software on your side.

#2. YOU CAN WORK FROM ANYWHERE

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Once upon a time, your business was forced to operate solely out of its designated office space. But with the advent of increasingly helpful technology (in this case, vehicle inspection software), those days are over. Thanks to the simplicity and elegance of going fully digital, you can bid farewell to the stacks of paperwork at your main office and conduct inspections directly from a mobile device.

Regardless of where your drivers may be, they can complete forms and update your files remotely, ensuring that your master documents are as current as possible. Nothing is worse than facing a delay or other avoidable harm to your business when a little bit of extra communication could have sorted everything out. You do not even have to be online to upload inspection reports into our mobile app.

Simply log in to the system on a smartphone or tablet to file a report, and your drivers can get back on the road before you know it. In the meantime, you’ll remain fully abreast of everything that is going on with your entire fleet.

Because each driver has their own individual login credentials, you’ll know who conducted each and every inspection, allowing you to remotely manage them while they go about their business and keep on working.

Drivers will even be able to flag faults and submit photos and comments. So you will have greater detail than a simple inspection form would have otherwise provided. Nowadays, technology enables work of all kinds to be done anywhere on the planet, and your company will finally boast the versatility and limitless mobility of a remote workspace — an especially valuable tool given the nature of your business — thanks to vehicle inspection software.

If your fleet can travel great distances, shouldn’t your business be able to do the same?

#3. YOU CAN EXPEDITE YOUR PROCESSES

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Jumping off of the fact that vehicle inspection software helps you save time and adds the convenience of being able to conduct inspections anywhere, this system naturally lends itself to expediting nearly all of the processes you already have in place. Because drivers can update each vehicle’s file instantly from wherever they are, you’ll be able to set your own action plans into motion.

Say, for instance, that a fault is flagged out in the field. With vehicle inspection software, you can set plans in motion to deal with this problem and resolve any outstanding issues without having to dramatically affect the output or productivity of the driver. If you’re already facing a complication, why should you be forced to then allow this obstacle to cause a ripple effect that does even more damage to your bottom line?

The sooner you take action, the more you can run damage control and contain the loss of time and other resources.

Whenever a fault is reported, you can update the status for the vehicle in question and share these details with the mechanics who can assist you in resolving the situation as quickly as possible. Most importantly, you’ll be able to keep your business running smoothly like the well-oiled machine you always dreamed it could be.

Transparency and communication go hand in hand in any team environment like yours, and vehicle inspection software goes a long, long way toward creating a seamless line of cooperation between you and your drivers. Trouble in the field is bound to happen from time to time, but with the right system in place, it doesn’t have to wreak too much havoc on your business plans. Harness the power available to you, and reclaim control of your profitability like never before. When it comes to your business, there’s no time to waste.

#4. YOU CAN OPTIMIZE YOUR PERFORMANCE

The longer you use vehicle inspection software, the more ways you will discover that it can transform how you conduct business. Even though the system gives drivers the opportunity to conduct inspections anywhere and in real time, you will actually have more control over your team and its vehicles. Everything within the system is tracked, logged and cataloged.

So you will never have to wonder what your drivers are up to or the status of any vehicles you have out on the road. In this way, vehicle inspection software allows you to optimize your performance to heights you may have previously thought unreachable.

Yet, with a sophisticated, intuitive software system on your side, your company will be poised to squeeze every last bit of productivity (and, of course, profit) out of every job. You’ve never seen your resources go as far as they can with vehicle inspection software in charge.

And the individual profiles the system gives to each driver and/or vehicle is only the start. You can arrange your drivers into teams based on any criteria you decide and attach notes or even documents to each record. This way, everyone will remain on the same page throughout every single job. Inspection records and other records will remain accessible to all relevant parties, and managers and drivers can remain connected and firmly in sync despite physical distance or any other challenges that may arise.

With vehicle inspection software, you’ll suddenly be able to manage your network of drivers at any size or scope. Even if your reach extends to national or perhaps international levels, it’s all the same with vehicle inspection software, giving you the added confidence in scaling up your operation. This tool is truly the best way to keep all parties connected and finally working together like they should have been doing the entire time.

#5. YOU’LL HAVE A WEALTH OF ACTIONABLE DATA

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By now you may be wondering if there is some larger purpose to all the data vehicle inspection software is collecting. In addition to simply keeping all parties up-to-date on all the latest details of each job, the compilation of all this data actually does serve another role.

Several, in fact. You can manipulate the system’s data in any number of ways, though one valuable one involves analytics. Pore over the vast details you have in your files, and you might very well identify trends or telltale signs of some opportunity for improvement or otherwise-glaring flaw in your process.

After all, you’ve never had real-time analytics at your fingertips like this. Structure into a wide variety of customizable reports — broken down by company, team or individual — all of which can be viewed from the management dashboard. Even if you’ve engaged in business intelligence-level reporting before, we doubt you’ve experienced it like this.

All that data can also be used to send alerts to managers who need to be notified of a particularly pertinent update, and — one of our favorite added-value features — you can create leader-boards with your vehicle inspection software. Such functionality basically tabulates all the activity within the system, allowing you to use the data in your system to motivate drivers to improve their performance.

It’s all 100% personalized to fit your needs, of course, You’d be surprised at the secrets and hidden gems you can uncover when you simply compile and arrange your system data in just the right way. Imagine all the possibilities for you to wring even more productivity out of your new system. Although the particulars may need a bit of tweaking to completely match your vision for your business, you’ll have a vast array of ways to engage with your company’s data and near-limitless potential for doing better in the days ahead.

THE TOOL YOU NEED

Now that we’ve outlined vehicle inspection software in further detail, we hope you’re starting to see why more and more companies like yours are embracing this system as a key component of their success strategy. Once you integrate this system into your company’s operation, we’re confident that you’ll see an immediate difference across the board.

From saving you time to creating more opportunities for growth, vehicle inspection software could very well be the edge your company has been needing for so very long. Get more done in less time, and enjoy more flexibility than you ever have. You’re just a few clicks away from bringing your business that much closer to optimal performance.

Whether you’re ready to get started or still have a few unanswered questions, the time to reach out for more information about vehicle inspection software is now. After all, your competitors aren’t going to wait until the opportune moment to streamline their processes or execute potentially game-changing process improvements.

You need to take fast action to stay ahead of the curve, and make no mistake: technology is pushing virtually every industry out there to finding innovative solutions to age-old problems. Vehicle inspection software is simply the next step in your company’s evolution, and the sooner you’re able to incorporate such a resource into your company, the more promising your long-term prospects will inevitably be.

The 8 Benefits of Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection Software

Many fleet companies have difficulty implementing pre-trip inspections as a requirement that is followed religiously by every single driver that they employ. Do you know how well your fleet is inspecting it’s vehicles? Do you have a way of monitoring this process? Pre-trip inspections are important for a number of reasons, all of which deal with avoiding the risk of trouble with your vehicle while it is on the road and improving your compliance.

As you probably know, it is required by every state that your fleet has undergone inspection before each trip. Let’s check out 8 good reasons why using pre-trip inspection software for this process will benefit you and your business.

REASON #1: Using inspection software greatly improves driver compliance

At the end of the day, it is down to your drivers to complete each and every pre-trip inspection. You need peace of mind that they are going to do every inspection thoroughly. With a clear and easy-to-use software you will have the ability to quickly train your drivers to do so without giving them the stress of having to keep track of too many things on their own. In other words, the software spells everything out for them.

REASON #2: Avoid driver vehicle inspection report (DVIR) problems

DVIR tickets, fines, and other issues are no joke. In most cases, drivers get ticketed for DVIR problems because they did not adequately perform their pre-trip inspection. Federal Motor Safety Carrier Administration statistics show that half of the violations reported in 2014 and 2015 had to do with lights, breaks, and tires.

Companies can be fined for driver’s not filling out their DVIR’s, filling them out incorrectly, and for the maintenance departments neglect of DVIR enforcement. In 2010, the companies that did not require their drivers to fill out DVIRs:

  • averaged out at $3,866 in fines, and,

  • had the potential of paying up to $9,960 for a single fine

The reality is, when your drivers have trouble with DVIR’s, it creates way more trouble for you. This is where the software helps you out. Pre-trip vehicle inspection software makes the inspections way easier to carry out and therefore much less trouble for your drivers. This should keep them on top of their inspections and, for the most part, safe from DVIR problems.

REASON #3: Go green and make organization easy at the same time with paperless records and digital inspections

By using digital pre-trip inspection forms, the whole process becomes much more efficient. Drivers no longer have to deal with clipboards and paper forms because everything required of them is directly accessible on their tablet or smartphone.

The digital forms make it easy for you to build a simple list of steps that are easy for your drivers to follow. You have the ability to use a ready-made template or make your own custom design from scratch. On the form you can list an unlimited amount of items that need to be inspected, such as:

  • battery

  • engine

  • axles

  • safety equipment

  • tires

  • breaks

You can also include additional helpful features, such as:

  • checkboxes

  • dropdown lists

  • Photos

  • date and time stamps

  • open text fields

Some softwares will also allow you to create video instructions and electronic signature fields. Your drivers will then be able to record a video as they inspect as proof of the inspections and to fully communicate and document what they find during the inspection.

Paperless records prevent data loss. Without the nuisance of piles and piles of paper records to keep track of, you can feel more secure that your data and documentation is all in its proper place. The data is backed up onto a secure cloud so such critical information is impossible to lose.

REASON #4: Software provides you with all the items that should be included in an inspection

If you are an extremely seasoned fleet company, you most likely know exactly what it is that should be on your inspection forms. However, you can never be too careful or sure that you have included every issue that may come up if a driver is suspected of neglecting proper protocol. An example of a list approved by the National Safety Council is as follows:

  • Check that tires, as well as the spare, are fully inflated. Check your owner’s manual for the tire’s proper rotation frequency. Have an ASE-certified technician rotate and balance the tires.

  • Brake lights, headlights, and turn signals should all be tested and any weak bulbs must be changed.

  • If wiper blades are worn, replace them.

  • Check all fluid levels including battery fluid, brake fluid, coolant, oil, transmission, and windshield wiper fluid.

  • Belts and hoses need to be checked for any cracks or bulges. If any of them are over 4 years old they should be replaced by a certified technician.

  • Make sure you have a “survival kit” in case of roadside emergencies that holds a blanket and warm clothing, a compass, antifreeze, a first aid kit, an ice scraper and snow brush, food that is non-perishable, reflective triangles, a tool kit, water, and a working flashlight with extra batteries.

REASON #5: The ability to stay on top of your faults

The instant that your driver experiences a fault flagged in the field, they will have the ability to immediately send it to their manager so they can begin the repair process by using the ‘faults module’. The module also includes dashboard reminders that will help your managers to monitor faults and fix them before they become an issue.

This tool makes problem solving super quick and easy for everyone involved. It also documents and creates a clear view of every fault that has been flagged by your company’s drivers. This information can be filtered by:

  • date and time

  • fault status

  • vehicle

  • driver

  • mechanic

By viewing all of your stats in this manner, you and your managers will be able to see just how many faults are in need of attention, the ones that will soon, and those that are in good standing. Once issues have been fixed you have the ability to update the fault status as well as sharing the form with your mechanic to allow them to update the status themselves and make any notes necessary.

Each of these updates are recorded by their time and date. Drivers will also be able to view the status of their vehicle’s faults so everyone is kept in the loop and assured that the vehicle is safe for travel.

REASON #6: Drivers can use their own phone to inspect vehicles

A good software will give your drivers the ability to download the data directly onto their smartphone and even use it when not connected to the internet. The software’s direct connection with the driver’s phone will allow them to take photos with their mobile camera which they can also add comments to with any necessary details.

The ability for the driver to use their own device creates an irreplaceable convenience for them and saves your company the massive chunk of time that would be wasted on paper based inspections.

REASON #7: Increase the longevity of each of your vehicle’s life span

Pre-trip vehicle inspections should be done by licensed inspectors as well as your drivers. As we touched upon earlier, within these inspections, they are checking for:

  • oil levels

  • break function

  • steering wheel function

  • overall equipment functionality

Because of this, the vehicle’s health is undergoing a complete check-up, ensuring an extended lifespan. The typical fleet inspection is in depth enough so that all of your vehicles should be confirmed to be in top running condition. Whenever issues arise, it is quickly found and remedied, keeping the wear and tare on the vehicle to a minimum.

REASON #8: Ensure your driver’s safety

From all of the knowledge we have gained about what goes into the pre-trip vehicle inspection, there is no question that its sole purpose is to ensure the safety of the driver and everyone else sharing the road with them.

If any of the required safety measures are not met, it means complications and could even mean fatal accidents on the road. Checking these parts helps to ensure that the equipment is completely safe to operate. Conducting a complete pre-test inspection helps to avoid:

  • the braking system failing

  • the coupling system failing

  • bad lights that could prevent the driver from seeing clearly in bad weather conditions

  • the steering system failing taking away the driver’s ability to avoid hitting walls, buildings, people, or other vehicles

  • a runaway trailer, causing the driver to lose cargo as they drive down the highway which poses a threat to other drivers as well as the damage of product

  • the failing of tires which usually means the tires fall part in pieces which creates a hazard for other vehicles that can cause damage, injury, and even death

The pre-trip vehicle inspection prevents the loss of equipment, but more importantly it protects lives. A full inspection allows the driver and the company the peace of mind that the driver, other’s on the road, and the company vehicle will all be safe.

What does this mean?

Every business wants to save money and protect its employees, customers, and equipment. When it comes to companies that manage fleets, pre-trip vehicle inspection software is the most sufficient key to ensure this all happens.

Shop around and make sure that you find a software that is malleable to your every need. The software’s purpose is to make your process easier, not more confusing. If you ever require assistance with your software, never hesitate to reach out to the customer service team. Through this technology, you can find the efficiency that you have been lacking.

Conduct a Pre-Trip Inspection from Anywhere, Anytime

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It’s a familiar and frustrating scene to anyone who manages a fleet: a vehicle breaks down, leaving you to figure out how to get it back to the warehouse. Now you’re stuck sending another vehicle in its place, potentially disrupting your entire schedule. The problem vehicle will need repairs that may require coordinating a team of mechanics.

It’s a behind the scenes task that seems simple, but that can eat up hours, time, and energy. Pre-trip inspections can reduce the likelihood and frequency of this scenario, but they come with their own set of challenges -- until now.

With Whip Around, you can conduct pre-trip inspections any time, anywhere. Our efficient and reliable software gives you back your time, while ensuring your vehicles are always in excellent working order. Here’s why Whip Around is a sound investment for your fleet.

Streamlining the inspection process from anywhere

Whip Around offers comprehensive fleet inspection software that allows you to inspect and monitor your vehicles anywhere you can access a digital device. Our mobile app makes it easy to take your inspections on the road, so there’s no longer a need to stand over anyone’s shoulder during inspections.

This means easier inspections, a less demanding schedule, and the ability to stay on top of vehicle repairs while still tending to the many other moving parts of your business. Here’s what Whip Around does to make it easier to manage your fleet from anywhere:

  • Customizable forms: Some programs require you to work with their forms, which may or may not work well for the way you do business. Whip Around allows you to customize your own forms based on Excel spreadsheets or checklists. The result? Attractive, clear forms that are customized to the way you do business.

  • Actionable information: Our program flags faults in your fleet, allowing you to take action and make notes about any action you take or plan to take. You can also delegate specific actions to mechanics or other members of your staff.

  • Individual profiles: Not every mechanic is equipped to work on every vehicle. Some teams might be more important than others. And your highest priority vehicles may need to get back on the road first.

  • Performance insights: Our analytics data takes fleet management to the next level. We provide extensive documentation about performance and potential areas of improvement. This allows you to plan for the short-term and for the future in a way that maximizes profits, minimizes stress, and keeps your fleet operating in world-class condition.

Acting on inspections: manage your repairs wherever you are

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These inspections can alert you to issues that may sideline a trip. They also draw attention to less critical issues that may need your attention in the coming weeks. Whether the repair is urgent or simply involves routine maintenance, Whip Around helps you manage repairs wherever you are.

In today’s competitive climate, it’s not enough to know that a vehicle needs repairs and then rush to see that those repairs happen. Whip Around offers much more, giving your business a competitive edge while freeing you up to manage other aspects of your company.

Our software is different because:

  • It gives you complete administrative control. Set up individual profiles for teams, vehicles, or users. Seamlessly add new users, control what they can access, and change access permissions in seconds.

  • It’s completely secure. You might be concerned about moving your sensitive fleet data to the cloud. You should be. Whip Around takes security seriously, offering world-class security that put your information behind a virtually impenetrable wall -- all while keeping it totally accessible to you and your team.

  • You can reliably access your information whenever you want.Whip Around has 99.99% uptime, and is constantly monitoring for bugs and glitches. You don’t have to worry about a temporary outage undermining your business operations.

  • Our program can be integrated with other programs your business depends on. The Whip Around API allows you to seamlessly connect data from Whip Around with other tools you use to run your business.

  • Get help when you need it. There are a veritable avalanche of programs promising to help you streamline inspections and operations. But how many can connect you to a real, live human being when you need support? We offer 24/7 email and chat customer service. That means you don’t have to be a tech expert to use our program, and you certainly don’t have to worry about a small issue mushrooming into something that slows operations for days.

Monitor your vehicles from anywhere

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Sooner or later, it happens to everyone who owns or manages a fleet: the pre-trip inspection indicates everything is fine, but something goes wrong on the road. Whip Around allows you to monitor your vehicles from anywhere. So when something goes wrong, you can tend to it immediately. Get a mechanic working on the issue before you even get back to the office.

Whip Around automatically syncs data from the driver’s smartphone to your dashboard. Practically speaking, this means Whip Around may be able to alert you to a problem before it becomes a catastrophe -- and often before a vehicle breaks down.

By comparing the real-world experience of drivers and their vehicles to the data you get from inspections and our continuously updated analytics, you can customize your approach to vehicle inspections. Over time, this can reduce the frequency with which vehicles break down, help you construct a custom maintenance and inspection schedule, and save you time and money.

Gain insight into vehicle performance

  • Which vehicles give you the most trouble?

  • Is there a specific driver who seems to run vehicles into the ground?

  • Or does a specific make or model of vehicles seem to run better than others?

  • What’s the longest you can go without an oil change without having problems?

  • How frequently do vehicles need routine maintenance?

  • Does every vehicle require a pre-trip inspection?

  • Do vehicles serviced by a specific mechanic seem to run better?

  • Do specific brands of tires, oil, or other products seem to hold up better?

  • Are vehicles more vulnerable to maintenance issues on specific routes or in certain climates?

Managing a fleet requires you to know your vehicles -- as well as the people who drive and service them -- like the back of your hand. Can you answer the above questions? Do you know what needs to change about your fleet in the next month, the next year, the next five years? You should.

Being able to answer simple as well as complex questions about your fleet can save you money, prevent maintenance problems, and give you a leg up on your competition. Knowledge is power, and the fleet owner who knows more can do more.

Knowing more is a tall order, particularly when you have other things to tend to. Unless you have a perfect memory and the ability to perfectly monitor trends over time, you need some way to track vehicle performance.

Whip Around offers real-time analytics and alerts that can help you more intelligently manage your fleet -- and the drivers who operate that fleet. Your competition may already be deploying a bevy of strategies to manage their fleet, run more efficiently, save money, and get the most for every vehicle’s buck. Don’t you want to join them in that endeavor?

Get your life back

Many business owners who manage a fleet have an entire business to operate. They may need to track inventory, deal with customers, construct sales pitches, and handle a host of other challenges. Being physically present for inspections, managing repairs, contacting mechanics, and the seemingly endless array of other tasks that await you each day can take you away from the core of your business. Whip Around gives you your life back.

Even if fleet management is your full-time and only business role, being able to outsource some of your daily work can free up valuable time. Ultimately, everyone works because they want more money and a better life. Whip Around offers both.

By managing some of your daily operations for you, Whip Around ensures that:

  • You can spend more time out of the office. Need to go to a parent-teacher conference or a doctor’s appointment? Work no longer has to interfere.

  • You can take guilt-free vacations. Enjoy your hard-earned money and spend time with your family, so you can return to work rested and rejuvenated. If there’s a fleet crisis, Whip Around helps you manage it from afar. Pre-trip inspections will no longer require your presence.

  • You can focus on your much-neglected hobbies because you no longer have to spend all of your time at the office.

Work-life balance is the key to happiness. No matter how many vehicles are in your fleet or how demanding your work is, you deserve a break. That’s what Whip Around gives you.

How remote pre-trip inspections can

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Sure, it’s convenient to have more free time or to no longer need to be on site for each inspection. But is the convenience worth it? We think so. Research shows that happy employees are more productive. So a little more free time a little less time spent worrying about inspections can improve your own productivity, and possibly that of your staff, too. Consider the time and hassle you currently spend managing inspections.

The effort likely includes:

  • Tracking down vehicles that need to be inspected, and planning multiple inspection times based on when vehicles will be available.

  • Assigning problem vehicles to various mechanics, usually in person.

  • Monitoring vehicles for signs that it might be time for repairs.

  • Monitoring trends in vehicle inspection failures and repairs.

  • Revamping your schedule based on which vehicles are out of commission, and which vehicles should only make short trips.

  • When necessary, replacing vehicles that cannot be economically repaired.

This can all easily become a full-time job. Perhaps you’ve hired a fleet manager to take care of these tasks for you. With Whip Around’s fleet management software, however, you can outsource much of the work to an automated program that does the heavy lifting for you.

Depending on your business model, this can revolutionize the way you do business. The benefits of automated inspections include:

  • Saving money. You might be able to eliminate a full-time employee, or reduce their hours to part-time. You’ll also save money on catastrophic vehicle failures, and be better equipped to plan trip routes based on which vehicles are in working order. This can help you make more money, and reduce the total costs of repairs.

  • Fewer fines and regulatory penalties. Depending upon your business model and whom you serve, a vehicle in poor working order could trigger fines and other regulatory penalties. Staying on top of your fleet with our software can help you avoid this annoyance.

  • Better customer service. No one likes to have to call a customer and tell them the vehicle will be late, or that the delivery must be rescheduled. You can more effectively serve your customers, potentially improving your reputation and even picking up a few new customers.

With more time to focus on managing your business, you may be able to cultivate more effective marketing, streamline other operations, engage in more customer interactions, become more involved in the community, and find new ways to grow your company. In today’s competitive climate, success is all about outsourcing what you can. To really thrive, however, you musty outsource carefully, choosing your partners wisely. Whip Around is a silent partner that gets the job done effectively, affordably, and confidentially.

How much do you bill for your time? Consider that every moment you spend on fleet management is time that you could be billing for your labor and expertise. Every hour you free up is an hour of money earned. Your time is the most valuable asset you have, because it’s the only thing you can’t get more of or earn back when it’s gone. Use it wisely with Whip Around.

Start now for free

Whip Around marks a categorically different way of doing things for most companies that operate a fleet. And while this can save time and money while reducing stress, change can also be scary. That’s why we offer a chance to start now, for free. There’s no credit card required. Give Whip Around a try and see if it works for you. That’s how confident we are in our revolutionary program.

Ready to see how easy it can be to manage a fleet with a little help? Start today. You can contact us for support, or click here to begin the registration process.

Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection Software that is Changing the face of DVIR

As a fleet manager, you know that keeping your vehicles both in good condition and on the road are two of the most important keys to success. When your vehicles are working at optimal levels, your team is less likely to have accidents, and you’re more likely to meet shipping deadlines.

One way to ensure your vehicles are always operating in the best condition possible is by using Whip Around DVIR software for your pre-trip inspections. Read on to learn how this software is changing the game for CDL drivers, fleet managers, and business owners.

What is Whip Around?

Whip Around is a post, during, and pre-trip vehicle inspection software (DVIR) that streamlines your fleet inspection process. Your drivers can perform their inspections using the mobile app available for Android and iOS systems, and then submit their paperless forms wirelessly to the web-based dashboard giving you all the information you need in real time.

Get Whip Around for Android via the Google Play Store, or for iOS in the iTunes store.

Who needs Whip Around

Fleet managers, owners, and their drivers need Whip Around. In your role as manager, you’re responsible for making sure that your vehicles and hence your drivers are safe before they get on the road, and that they are in compliance with all Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. The best way you ensure your vehicles are good to go, is for your drivers to complete a pre-trip inspection.

Whip Around is the modern solution to PTIS

Using the traditional, outdated, paper based systems is time-consuming and open to inaccuracies. What’s worse is that when your drivers have to complete paper-based forms, a lot of time is wasted bringing the paperwork to the administrative team, and then reading the forms, evaluating them, and finally scheduling maintenance and repairs for any faults that are found during the inspection. Heaven forbid they get interupted while transporting the paperwork -- those precious minutes can add up to hours off the road!

Whip Around helps you to minimize downtime by allowing your drivers to quickly fill out their form from their mobile device, take images and make notes on vehicle faults, and then automatically send the report to you upon completion.

Let’s face it -- It’s far too easy to miss something on a paper report and chalk it up to simple forgetfulness. With Whip Around you can’t miss something in your pre-trip vehicle inspection because you have to physically check off an item before you can move onto the next one.

Then, after they have completed their form, within mere moments you’ll receive an alert that the form is ready to review, and as a result you’ll be able to get the vehicle over to a mechanic faster as well.

What does that mean? Well, in dollars and sense, it means your driver will have a road ready vehicle in a fraction of the time, and be back on the road to boost your bottom line.

The Whip Around app comes preloaded with a 12 step form to make your pre-trip inspection a breeze

Pretty much everyone has a smart phone these days. And, the Whip Around app can be downloaded to any Android or iOS system almost instantly, giving your drivers the ability to start doing their inspections without a pen and paper in just moments only using pre-trip vehicle inspection software.

The app features a pre-loaded 12 step form that has your drivers check for things like:

  • Windshield, wipers, sun visors and mirrors

  • Lights and indicators

  • Wheels and tires

  • Fluid leaks

  • Reflectors, indicators and air hoses

  • Doors and seat belts

  • Horn and speedometer

  • Steering for excessive free movement

  • Switches and even whether or not you have enough fuel to complete the trip

The form also features a space to enter mileage and add the signature of the driver. If you don’t like the way the form looks in the free account, you can upgrade to a premium or enterprise account to add customized entries for inspection, or rearrange the order that your checklist appears in.

One of the best parts about the app is that the prompts are easy to follow, and there’s no guesswork involved for any of the items on the checklist. Your drivers can give you the exact data you need, and if there are any discrepancies, they will be prompted to take a photo and explain them so you’ll never be in the dark as to what’s going on with the trucks in your fleet.

Whip Around saves your business time and money

By using Whip Around, your drivers will be less likely to face:

  • Accidents

  • Fines

  • Serious repairs

  • Large amounts of downtime off the road

The reporting system within Whip Around also puts you in a position to take advantage of lower insurance premiums and governments levies. Since the system is designed to allow your drivers to undertake quick and easy daily inspection of their vehicles and keep a thorough history of records, you will have a record of safe practices at the ready for any potential audits by external authorities, upper management, and/or clients.

Your company will enjoy a reduction in accidents on the road

Many of the accidents that occur on the road, happen due to things that were completely preventable. And, those precious moments spent doing a pre-trip inspection can often reveal minor things that could ultimately lead to much more serious and costly accidents or incidents.

For example, a tire coming loose from a truck and hitting another motorist is in most cases preventable if your driver:

  • Completes a pre-trip vehicle inspection,

  • Therefor notices the tire isn’t on securely, and subsequently

  • Secures it before departure

Did you know that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) published a study that stated ‘“Tires” was the most frequently coded vehicle-related factor for passenger vehicles in fatal crashes?” In fact, faulty issues with vehicles and tires were found to be the most common vehicle-related factors for large trucks in fatal crashes.

Can you imagine the legal and financial implications your company could face in the event a fatal crash occurs all because your driver didn’t ensure that their tires were secure on their vehicle before getting on the road? This is the kind of thing money hungry accident attorneys salivate over, and that honestly can break a trucking company’s business.

What about your windshield wipers and windshield wiper fluid? If you’re not checking that those are in good condition before your departure, you run the risk of not being able to see while driving down the road. Impaired vision is just asking for an accident -- and yes, it would be a preventable one!  

Checking the brakes is critical too!

Another type of accident that is sometimes preventable is a rear-ending. While it is true that in many cases the driver of a CDL vehicle is not found at fault when the person they rear-ended cut them off or weather conditions prevented them from avoiding the crash, if it is found the driver didn’t check their brakes in their pre-trip inspection, they can:

  • Be found at fault for the crash due to faulty equipment alone

  • Get a ticket

  • Be held liable for any damage to the vehicle

  • Be on the hook for any injury claims

The company can also be held liable for damage to the vehicle and the costs associated with injury claims.

Rear endings are the number one type of crash involving a CDL driver according to the FMCSA. That’s why it’s even more important to make sure that your driver’s brakes, and brake fluid are in optimal condition before the driver takes to the road.

Whip Around can also help you save money on repair bills

A small problem left unchecked can lead to costly repair bills. An example would be not checking for fluid leaks that ultimately result in bigger problems such as radiator fluid leaks.

Common things that “break down” due to radiator fluid leaks are the thermostat, the water pump and the heater core. If your driver had just checked for leaks, the faulty radiator hose could have been found sooner, and all those subsequent failures and repairs could have been avoided.

Whip Around will reveal trends in faults and repairs

Because the app provides you with real time data, you will always be able to notice when there is a sudden uptick in repair needs, and be able to prepare your budgets and game plan accordingly.

It could be something as simple as noticing there has been a significant increase in the number of drivers needing the same part replaced. This might point to an issue with the model of truck that your drivers are driving cluing you into the fact that you might want to take it up with the manufacturer or avoid purchases from them in the future.

When you have 10, 50, 100, or more drivers in your fleet dealing with the same issue over and over, it can add up. Therefore, having data to back up your claim that something is off, or not quite right, could help you find a way to correct the situation in some way, shape or form. After all, it’s difficult to argue with hard data and real time numbers!

Less time with the mechanic means more time on the road

Smaller repairs are not only cheaper, but they also take less time to perform as well. Every moment your drivers are not on the road could be costing your company significant amounts of money.  Think about it. If vehicle down time can cost more than $1,000 per truck per day, wouldn’t it be better to spend as little time as possible in the mechanic’s station?

Downtime costs your company more than you may realize

Your fleet’s ability to get their deliveries to the intended destination is one way your company builds its reputation. Spending a lot of added time dealing with extensive repairs can make you look bad to your clients, and could cost you their future business if it becomes too much of a problem. Yet another reason those pre-trip inspections are so critical, and making them easy to do makes things better for everyone.

What’s the cost of Whip Around, and what do you get for the money?

We get it, as with all business expenses, you want to the brass tax so you know exactly what you’re getting into.

There are currently three account tiers with Whip Around:

  • Free: Free to sign up and includes 1 vehicle with limited access.

  • Premium: Pricing begins at $8 per month for 1 vehicle and pricing plans are available for up to 250 vehicles in your fleet.

  • Enterprise: Price available upon application and is intended for fleets larger than 250 vehicles.

There are no contracts to sign, and you can cancel any time. Whip Around is a monthly subscription service charged on a per truck, per month basis. As your needs change you can upgrade or downgrade your account to meet those needs.

When you sign up your get instant access to:

  • The latest technology: Whip Around is constantly being improved to keep up with the latest advancements in the field. As the technology evolves there are no extra costs to your business, you can simply update the app, and keep on trucking.

  • Our cloud based storage system: You don’t have to keep lots of records on your own servers, so there is no hardware/storage cost on your end. The Whip Around technology is built in the cloud and relies on smart phones to collect the information. Because of this you are able to access the information from your account on any device, at any location, at any time around the world.

  • Each account features a web based dashboard, but the Premium and Enterprise Accounts include:

    • Unlimited dashboard users

    • Unlimited drivers

    • Unlimited customized pre-trip inspection forms - you can add inspection items not found in the freemium account

    • Email and chat support (priority for premium, unlimited for enterprise accounts, and enterprise also includes phone support)

    • Mobile App Access and Access to application program interface (API)

You can start today for free!

If you’re not quite ready to try a premium or enterprise account, that’s okay! You can get started with Whip Around for free. Create a free account today by clicking here. You’ll soon see how much faster your pre-trip inspections can be completed, and get on the fast track to reducing costs and increasing your bottom line.

7 Tips to Passing a CDL Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection

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A CDL pre-trip vehicle inspection is one of the most important things a driver can do to ensure that their vehicle is safe on the road. Of course time is money, and every minute that you're not back on the road you're potentially losing money. That's why it's imperative you create a vehicle inspection process that can be done efficiently.


You need a repeatable process that enables you to check your vehicle quickly but thoroughly, make sure that it's road-ready, and gets you back on the road as soon as possible. With that in mind below are seven tips to passing a CDL pre-trip vehicle inspection.

  1. Download and use DVIR software on your smartphone that allows you optimize the process of doing a CDL Pre-Trip Vehicle Inspection with ease. We may be biased, but we recommend the Whip Around™ app.  

  2. Have a predetermined set of things to look for in your inspection so that you can do it quickly and effectively every time.

  3. Document everything with photos and keep thorough records to avoid tickets/fines.

  4. Check your vehicle every 24 hours, with every shift change, and/or when picking up new equipment to catch small problems before they become big and costly ones.

  5. Keep your boss/fleet manager in the loop as to what’s going on with your vehicle at all times so that faults can be fixed quickly.

  6. Repair the faults that compromise the safety of the vehicle prior to your departure. Also be sure to schedule maintenance for and/or keep an eye on things that may need to be repaired/replaced in the near future.

  7. Keep up with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations so you’re always certain you know what it takes to be compliant.

1. Download the Whip Around App

Whip Around is the driver vehicle inspection report software that has changed the game when it comes to the CDL Pre-Trip Inspection. The application is available for both Android and iOS phones, and comes with everything you need to create a thorough and well documented vehicle report.

Download the app for free, enter some simple information as well as your license plate, and voila! You have a paperless system at the ready at all times to keep records about the status of your commercial vehicle. Just a few of the features of Whip Around include:

  • Mobile checklists to keep track of what’s working, what’s not, and what needs immediate attention.

  • The ability to take photos of worn and broken elements of your vehicle such as broken windshields and burned out taillights and headlights.

  • Automatic syncing between your smartphone and the web based dashboard, so that you and your fleet manager will always know the status of your vehicle.

With Whip Around in your pocket, you’ll always have a documented report of your vehicle, and the ability to make a new report whenever you want to.

2. Streamline the CDL pre-trip inspection process

When you have a checklist that you can use every time you need to do a pre-trip inspection, you can do it faster without worrying whether or not you missed something. Not only does Whip Around have a 12 step form preloaded in the freemium account, you can upgrade to the Premium Plan and add custom elements to your checklist.

WHAT KINDS OF THINGS SHOULD YOU BE LOOKING FOR IN YOUR PRE-TRIP INSPECTION PROCESS?

The freemium account of Whip Around includes an inspection checklist for the following:

  • Windshield, windshield wipers, sun visor and mirror:

    • Do your wipers work correctly?

    • Is the windshield clean and not cracked?

    • Are the wiper blades damaged?

    • Is the washer fluid container full?

    • Do the windshield washers work correctly?

  • Lights and indicators

    • Are all lights work correctly including your hazard lights?

    • Are the lenses clean and not cracked?

  • Left and Right wheels and tires (note: in the app there are two separate sections for the left and right wheels and tires. This allows you to assess one side of the vehicle completely before moving to the other side instead of bouncing around.)

    • Are the tires on both sides of the vehicle correctly inflated and not damaged?

    • Are the wheel nuts tightened?

    • Is there any damage to the wheels?

    • Do you see cuts or bulges in the tire sidewalls?

    • Is the tread path adequate?

  • Left and Right Fluid leaks (note: again, there are two separate sections for the right and left side of the vehicle in the app)

    • Do you notice any fluid leaks on the right or left side of the vehicles from the engine, fuel system or waste water tank?

  • Reflectors, toe coupling, tail lights, indicators and air hoses

    • Is everything fitted, working, clean and not damaged?

  • Doors and seat belts

    • Do all doors open and close fully?

    • Is a fire extinguisher present, serviced and ready for use?

    • Are all seat belts working correctly

  • Horn and Speedometer

    • Does the horn work correctly?

    • Is the speedometer working correctly?

  • What is your current mileage?

  • Final check for road readiness of the vehicle:

    • Steering for excessive free movement

    • No apparent air leaks from  breaks

    • All switches and warning lines operate correctly

    • Sufficient fuel to complete trip

  • The end of the 12 step form also includes a space for the signature of the driver that inspected the vehicle. An unsigned inspection report can be grounds for a ticket/fine. Speaking of fines...

3. Keep Records - Avoid Fines

If you get a random inspection at a weigh station, or are pulled over for any reason and cause is found to do a random inspection, it’s imperative you have documentation for any faults that may be found. The phrase “I didn’t know” simply won’t save you, unfortunately.

In the event that the random inspection results in finding faults you don’t have documentation for, a few things can happen --

  • You could get a fine

  • You might be ordered to have it repaired before you can continue on your trip

  • You could get a fine, and be ordered to have it repaired

  • Your vehicle could be placed out of service and require towing to the nearest repair shop, and again you could get a fine.

This is why doing the CDL pre-trip vehicle inspection is so important. You need to be able to find and repair faults quickly, and/or have documentation related to faults that aren’t quite necessary to repair just yet.

WHAT CAN WARRANT A ROADSIDE INSPECTION?

Some states spot check CDL vehicles at weigh stations, others will do an inspection if they pull you over for moving violations.

At weigh stations, the DOT doesn’t necessarily have time to thoroughly inspect every truck that comes through, however you should always be ready for one. According to FleetOwner.com, “a tidy cab can often mean ‘move along,’” and you won’t have a thorough inspection.

Therefore, it’s a good idea to keep your cab tidy at all times. Fleet Owner also suggests having a pleasant attitude, and making sure your documents are easily accessible to that they’re easy to inspect.

Trucker Insider says that there are six levels to a roadside inspection with level one being the most thorough, complete with the DOT inspector crawling “underneath, over, onto and through (you get the point) of your vehicle.”

Levels two through five are varying degrees of thoroughness, and level six “is reserved for those that haul transuranic waste and Highway rout[e] controlled quantities of radioactive material.”

If you are pulled over for speeding or any other roadway violation, you could face a roadside inspection of your CDL vehicle as well. For this reason alone, it’s a good idea to obey speed limits and follow the other rules of the road so you can stay on the road, and stick to your driving schedule.

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO IF YOU’RE CHOSEN FOR A ROADSIDE INSPECTION?

  • Stay calm

  • Be pleasant

  • Answer any and all questions to the best of your ability

  • Hand over all requested documentation

Hopefully no violations will be found, and you’ll be back on the road quickly and painlessly.

4. Catch small problems before they become big problems

Did you know that a small crack in a windshield can turn into a large crack or even a completely shattered windshield while driving on the road? Hitting a pothole or a big bump in the road could result in you needing the windshield completely replaced if you don’t repair small cracks as soon as you notice them.

The same can be said for other small problems -- they can all turn into bigger and much more expensive ones. For example, a leaky hose left unrepaired could drain your windshield washer fluid, or worse your brake fluid! That can get expensive real fast.

Consider for a moment the legal troubles you could also face if you didn’t ensure the wheel nuts were tightened, and then a wheel came loose and hit another motorist on the road. Though this may seem unlikely, it’s better to ensure the safety of your vehicle not just for yourself, but for other drivers you will be sharing the road with.

While it’s true that some things can wear and tear a while before needing to be replaced, it’s a good idea to keep documentation on any and all faults of your vehicle so that you can track the urgency for the repairs and replacements of those faults.

5. Give your fleet manager your reports

A good manager is an informed one. With Whip Around, fleet managers will always know the status of the vehicles in their fleet. As soon as a driver completes their CDL pre-inspection report, they can instantly sign it and send it. It will then automatically sync from their smartphone to the fleet manager’s web based dashboard.

This ensures that the fleet manager will always be kept in the loop as to whether or not the vehicles in their fleet need repairing, and will also give them up to date analytics so they can track if there is a sudden uptick in repairs and issues.

6. Repair what you can ASAP, and schedule the rest

It’s critical that you repair the faults that compromise the safety of the vehicle prior to your departure for a trip. Though it can be frustrating to delay a trip due to repairs, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Simply putting it off until the next day or even the next trip could be the difference between getting a fine during a spot inspection from the DOT, and having a trip free of hassles. Delaying your repairs in the worst case scenario could be the difference of getting into an accident and your safe return home.

You or your fleet manager should schedule regular maintenance for your vehicle as well. Things like oil changes, wheel alignment, keeping your fluids full (wiper fluid, power steering, coolant, etc…), air filters, batteries, and so on are important for both safety and comfort. The better condition your vehicle is kept in, the less likely you are to experience down time, and as a result, loss of income.

7. KEEP UP TO DATE WITH FMCSA REGULATIONS

Do you know what the current FMCSA regulations are for drivers? If you’ve been a driver for a while, it may have been months or even years since you last studied the FMCSA manual. Even if you’re not going to be taking a test again any time soon, it’s important that you keep up to date with all FMCSA regulations so you’re always certain you know what it takes to be compliant.

It may be a good idea to have education days regularly to ensure that you and your fleet are up to date on the latest rules. It’s better to know the law and avoid a fine, than try and argue your way out of a ticket for non compliance. If your fleet manager isn’t interested in education days, you can always search the FMCSA website on your own to keep yourself educated on the rules.

READY TO TRY WHIP AROUND?

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If you have been looking for reliable a DVIR software-solution, perhaps it’s time to give Whip Around a try. We’re confident you’ll be impressed with just how quickly you can inspect your vehicles to ensure they are safe and road-ready.

Learn more about pricing and create your free account today! We look forward to making your CDL Pre-Trip Inspection process a little easier on your company and its employees.