CSA Not Used to Rate Individual Drivers – FMCSA Official
In a recent online town hall on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program, a FMCSA official emphasized that CSA is not about individual “score cards” for individual drivers. Rather, the data gathered on individual drivers through CSA is used only to determine which drivers to review to determine the trucking company’s compliance ratings.
The FMCSA official mentioned another program, the Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP), that might be confused with CSA “score cards” on truckers being developed by private companies catering to motor carriers. PSP gathers driving history and inspection data on truckers that can be revealed to prospective employers that request it from the FMCSA. Truckers must authorize FMCSA to release the PSP info, but in many cases, employers may condition employment offers on their ability to review the PSP information.
Trucker’s Safety Measurement System Ranking May Affect Employer’s SMS Ranking
Law enforcement officials were also on hand at the online town hall to talk about trucker citations and roadside inspections. An officer with the Colorado State Patrol noted that in Colorado, only citations that were handed out in a roadside inspection would “count” for the commercial driver’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) ranking and the carrier’s SMS ranking. Traffic tickets received while driving a personal vehicle do not contribute to the trucker’s SMS ranking. And tickets received during a law enforcement officer’s “screen” to determine if a commercial vehicle or driver should be inspected also do not count toward SMS rankings.
Obviously, with so many safety and roadside inspection programs for commercial vehicles, motor carriers and truckers, federal agencies are trying to emphasize safety and compliance with federal regulations and decrease the number of truck accidents. But the numerous new initiatives can be confusing, over-lapping and can leave gaps in evaluating truly dangerous truckers and trucking companies with unsafe hiring practices, and inadequate maintenance and inspection schedules.
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