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How to Streamline Vehicle Inspection Reporting and Reduce Administrative Paperwork

man in a truck showing a phone that says "compliant" with a check mark

Not completing driver-vehicle inspection reports (DVIRs) can result in fines and a vehicle being taken out of commission in the US and Canada. Sometimes this results in a permanent disqualification. Fines can be up to $1,928 per day for not completing an inspection report and a whopping $13,072 any time an inspection report is falsified.

It can also negatively affect your fleet’s CSA score, which can damage your reputation.

Managing a fleet of vehicles is stressful enough as it is, and doing it with a haphazard inspection process can lead to these consequences as well as costly repairs and even severe injuries or fatalities in a worst-case scenario. Driver vehicle inspection reporting is vital to fleet safety and compliance.

By filling out a formal inspection, drivers confirm their vehicles have been inspected pre-trip and post-trip to highlight any mechanical defects. This, in turn, ensures vehicles are safe to drive, any issues are promptly fixed, and maintaining inspection compliance in the US and Canada.

There’s just one problem. Driver vehicle inspection reporting can be an immense administrative burden that takes up 40% of a fleet manager’s time. In this post, we’ll discuss how to reduce that burden and streamline this critical aspect of fleet management.

The Purpose of a Driver Vehicle Inspection Report

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has rigorous outlines in place regarding driver vehicle inspection reporting. According to Section 396.11, “A driver must prepare a DVIR at the completion of each day’s work and shall submit those reports to the motor carrier upon his/her return to the home terminal.” If a vehicle weighs 10,001 pounds or more, is designed for nine or more passengers, or transports hazardous materials, a report must be filled out.

Failure to comply with regulations can have some harsh consequences because it can A) result in expensive fines for noncompliance and B) the vehicle be taken out of commission until necessary repairs are made. And in some cases, it can even be permanently disqualified.


Never Rely on An Out-of-Date Paper Inspection Form Again

Digitize your paperwork and immediately get data to the back office with Titan GPS FieldDocs Pre- and Post-trip Inspections. Get instant access to inspection reports, verify your drivers complete all necessary forms in real-time, and ensure damaged vehicles are fixed before they are driven. NSC Standard 13 and CFR §396.11 compliant.

Aside from the immediate fines, it’s a double-whammy because of vehicle downtime. Beyond that, your fleet’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) score can take a hit as well, which can hurt your long-term brand reputation.

The bottom line is that, as a fleet manager, you should remain diligent about driver-vehicle inspection reporting, as it keeps your vehicles and your drivers on the road, saves money, reduces downtime, and protects your reputation.

But as we mentioned earlier, this can create headaches from an administrative standpoint. Although the process is fairly straightforward, it can still be time-consuming, especially when you’re talking about a large fleet with hundreds or thousands of vehicles. Without the right system in place to streamline inspection reports, it can greatly decrease the efficiency of your fleet operations and put a squeeze on productivity.

So, what can you do to reduce this administrative burden?

How Digital DVIRs Reduce Paperwork

One of the best solutions is fleet management software — particularly digital DVIRs. This innovative technology allows your fleet to efficiently perform pre- and post-trip inspections with ease using electronic logbooks or any smartphone or tablet. This greatly streamlines the process to keep vehicles in peak operating condition, maintaining accurate records, and ensuring compliance every step of the way.

Digital vehicle inspection reporting like Titan GPS, for example, lets you:

  • Create and submit vehicle inspection reports in seconds
  • Quickly move through the inspection process without compromising accuracy
  • Customize your inspection forms
  • Eliminate paperwork
truck next to phone and tablet showing digital FIeldDocs inspections


It also meets both US and Canadian rules, supports multiple types of vehicles and trailers, and is available on iOS and Android devices. Here are some key benefits.

Staying Compliant

By choosing a solution like Titan GPS that meets US and Canadian regulations, you can perform driver vehicle inspection reporting without using manual, paper-based processes like in the past. This in turn, allows your fleet to swiftly move through the process while ensuring compliance, even as regulations change.

Quick Reporting

As we stated above, this platform allows you to create reports in seconds with customizable forms. Simply choose the appropriate form for the specific truck or equipment you need to inspect and check off each box one by one.

snow plow next to a phone showing the Titan GPS FieldDocs equipment inspection interface


On-the-go Mobile App

Because digital DVIRs are available as a mobile app on iOS and Android, you have the freedom of doing reporting from any location with an Internet or data connection. This means no more being tethered to a single location or having to sort through piles of messy paperwork.

How We Help Fleet Managers Focus on Leadership

Research has found that, on average, fleet managers spend a staggering 40% of their time on administrative tasks. Without efficient processes in place, paperwork can quickly consume a fleet manager’s day where they’re unable to devote adequate time to what’s truly important — leadership. And that’s exactly why digital DVIR is so important.

By freeing up more of a fleet manager’s time by streamlining this notoriously painstaking administrative task, it gives them more bandwidth so they’re not buried in paperwork. That way they can work more intently on building, managing, and optimizing their fleet.

Talk to an expert today about digital DVIR and discover the best-fit solution for your fleet.

FAQs About Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports

Here’s the information that must be provided in every report:

  • Date
  • Vehicle identity
  • Driver signature who filled out the DVIR
  • Mechanic signature or signature of whoever repaired the vehicle (or decided it didn’t need a repair)
  • Next driver’s signature to confirm a repair was completed or that it wasn’t necessary

Note that some electronic DVIRs, like the Titan GPS digital vehicle inspection app, let fleets customize their inspection criteria depending on the specific equipment used, such as a truck, excavator, dozer, snow plow, and so on. These apps also allow for unique inspection requirements to ensure every aspect of reporting is performed with full compliance.

The minimum vehicle parts that must be included are as follows:

  • Service brakes
  • Parking brakes
  • Steering system
  • Tires, wheels, and rims
  • Horn
  • Rearview mirrors
  • Lights and reflectors
  • Coupling device


Besides that, an inspection should include any emergency equipment on board such as a fire extinguisher, flares, and spare fuses.

In most cases, today’s fleet managers prefer electronic DVIRs to traditional paper because of the simplicity it offers. That’s largely because it standardizes vehicle inspection reporting, allowing fleets to conveniently gather data in one centralized location. It also minimizes any misunderstandings that can arise because of conflicting vocabularies across different departments.

Electronic inspection reports are also beneficial because they ensure all essential information is gathered and nothing is left out. If, for example, a driver accidentally forgets to include certain inspection criteria, the software notifies them until every last box is checked. And because of the complete overview this technology provides, it helps fleet managers fully understand the condition of each vehicle from a bird’s-eye view.

Yes, driver vehicle inspection reports can conveniently be done using iOS or Android devices — both on smartphones and tablets. As long as there’s an Internet or data connection, you’re good to go.

Not filling out DVIRs can result in fines and a vehicle being taken out of commission in the US and Canada. While it can be temporary, sometimes not completing DVIRs results in permanent disqualification for the vehicle. It can be up to $1,928 per day for not completing an inspection report, and an inspection report is falsified, it can cost up to $13,072. Neglecting to conduct inspections can also hurt your fleet’s CSA score, which can weaken your reputation.

Under federal regulations, you’re required to keep a DVIR and any certification of repairs for three months in the USA and six months in Canada.

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