Published: 05/14/2024

Navigating DOT Week: Pro Tips for Shippers and Carriers

The annual CVSA International Roadcheck is happening this week, and it’s important for both shippers and carriers to be prepared.

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The annual CVSA International Roadcheck, also known as DOT Week or DOT Blitz, is happening this week, and it’s important for both shippers and carriers to be prepared for the potential impacts it may have on the transportation industry. 

But, what is DOT Week (or DOT Blitz)?

It is a 72-hour event that involves intense inspections on commercial motor vehicles in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, focusing on a wide range of factors, including ELD compliance, tire treads, breaks, exhausts, suspensions, lights, and more.

Key Effects: 

One of the key effects of DOT Week is the tightening of truckload capacity in the market. Many drivers may opt to take time off rather than risk facing fines, safety rating downgrades, or being put out of service due to violations found during inspections. As a result, there may be a temporary decrease in available capacity, leading to potential spot rate volatility and disruptions in routing guide compliance.

The market will not fully return to normal on Friday – While more drivers will reenter the capacity pool, some may choose to take the entire week off, and others may still be temporarily out of service due to DOT violations. Additionally, any freight that was not picked up during Roadcheck will be rolled over to Friday’s board.

How to Reduce Disruptions:

Carriers can take proactive steps to navigate DOT Week successfully. Anticipating delays, encouraging drivers to be polite and cooperative during inspections, and taking advantage of available freight opportunities are important strategies to consider. Treating every week like DOT Week by always being prepared for inspections can help carriers stay ahead and maintain a strong reputation with their customers.

#WSLProTips

Here are a few steps you can follow to promote a successful DOT week:

Prepare for Delays

With inspections happening at a rapid pace, make sure to schedule extra time for potential delays. Stay proactive in communicating with customers if your drivers encounter any scheduling issues.

Seize Opportunities for Freight

Many drivers avoid running during DOT week due to potential inspections, creating more available freight for those who do decide to hit the road. This can lead to higher spot rates and showcase your reliability as a carrier to customers.

Consistent Preparedness is Key

Ensure that your operations are always up to standard for inspections. Being consistently ready will make navigating DOT week much smoother.

Ultimately, while DOT Week may lead to some challenges and disruptions in the transportation industry, it’s important to remember that the vast majority of carriers will operate as usual, and most shipments will proceed as planned. By being proactive, prepared, and flexible, both shippers and carriers can successfully navigate this annual event.

If you’re looking for carrier capacity during DOT Week or seeking freight opportunities, at White Star Logistics we can help you connect with the services you need. By working together and taking practical steps to prepare for potential impacts, you can ensure a smoother and more efficient shipping experience during this annual inspection blitz. Stay informed, stay prepared, and keep reaching your transportation goals!

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