For the Record

Truckers News Staff | February 01, 2011

Most Carriers Unranked Under CSA

Avery Vise

Barely 12 percent of active motor carriers are ranked in any of the five safety categories within the new Safety Measurement System that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration made public for the first time on Dec. 12, according to an analysis by Commercial Carrier Journal, which is a sister publication of Truckers News.

The SMS, which replaced SafeStat, is a key component of what FMCSA now formally calls Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) — not Comprehensive Safety Analysis 2010. The agency published SMS data and metrics after a federal appeals court turned down an emergency request for a stay.

CCJ’s analysis of data published at FMCSA’s Analysis & Information website shows that only 92,184 of the 758,682 active motor carriers in the agency’s database are ranked in any of the five publicly available Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs) — Unsafe Driving, Fatigued Driving, Driver Fitness, Controlled Substances and Vehicle Maintenance. The Cargo-Related and Crash Indicator BASICs are, for now, withheld from the public due to agency concerns that the data could be misleading.

Of the 92,184 carriers that are ranked in at least one BASIC, 52,967 carriers have at least one alert, meaning they exceeded the threshold for intervention. The greatest number of alerts, 29,207, are in the Fatigued Driving BASIC, followed by the Vehicle Maintenance BASIC at 21,791. The Controlled Substances BASIC had the fewest alerts at 3,605.

The majority of carriers are unranked because FMCSA set minimum thresholds of inspections to be considered within BASIC safety event groups. Those floors vary, but generally carriers must have three to five inspections in the past 24 months to be ranked in a BASIC. FMCSA plans to use those rankings to target interventions under its new graduated process, which starts with warning letters and escalates potentially to full-blown compliance reviews.



FYI News Briefs

Class 8 Truck Orders Increase

November net orders of heavy-duty Class 8 commercial vehicles for North American markets increased 38 percent over October to 26,268 units, according to ACT Research Co. In the latest release of the State of the Industry: Classes 5-8 Vehicles, ACT noted Class 8 net orders rose to the highest monthly total in more than four years.

November Trailer Orders Surge

Net orders of commercial trailers of 21,314 units in November increased 23 percent over October, which was the strongest month in more than two years, ACT Research Co. said. November net orders more than tripled from the same month last year.

November Tonnage Slips Slightly

The American Trucking Associations’ advance seasonally adjusted For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index edged 0.1 percent lower in November after increasing a revised 0.9 percent in October. Compared with November 2009, adjusted tonnage climbed 3.9 percent, which was significantly lower than October’s 6-percent year-over-year increase. Year-to-date, tonnage is up 5.9 percent compared with the same period in 2009.

Truckers Raise $71,000 for Troops

The fourth annual Truckers for Troops campaign by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association raised more than $71,000 going to care packages for military personnel stationed in combat areas overseas. The campaign ran Dec. 6-10, aided by a donation from Shell Rotella for $5,000. OOIDA members and supporters have contributed nearly $230,000 over the four previous campaigns.

Bill Adds Weight Program

A provision has been added to an omnibus government funding bill that would extend the Maine and Vermont truck weight pilot program for one year. The pilot program gives heavier six-axle trucks full access to interstate highways in Maine and Vermont. The Obama administration and Maine DOT both have supported the permanent extension of the pilot program and have credited it with having improved safety and productivity on Maine and Vermont highways.

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