A Department of Transportation truck inspection includes an official from the department evaluating both the truck itself and the driver for compliance with the current laws and regulations. Typical aspects of the inspection include checking the condition of the truck, the driver's knowledge of procedures and his licensing.
One of the largest aspects of a Department of Transportation truck inspection is the physical evaluation of the truck to ensure it meets both state and federal safety regulations. This often includes looking at the exterior of the truck for damage along with checking important components such as the bed coupling, which may result in a loss of cargo if not in proper working order. The inspector may also check the truck's engine and internal systems to make sure that it is unlikely to experience any issues during operation. All trucks must also have functioning safety features, such as tail and headlights, as well as hazard warning signs.
The inspector may also test the driver's knowledge of driving laws and transportation requirements, such as how to verify a route with the Department of Transportation. The driver also needs to have a valid commercial driver's license and proper registration and insurance. In some instances, the condition of the truck may be the responsibility of the carrier business and not the actual truck driver.