In a session titled “CSA: Where do we go from here?” three panelists delved into some of the main problems with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability program, with most boiling down to one simple premise: So far, CSA scores do not correlate very will with a carrier or driver’s future risk of crashing.
Scott Mugno, VP of safety for FedEx, hammered the point home, saying only three of the seven BASICs (behavior analysis and safety improvement categories) reflect any correlation with a carrier’s risk of crashing. Because of that, Mugno said, the scores in the Safety Measurement System should not be made public, as customers, shippers and the public at large can make judgment of a carrier or driver based on those scores, even though they do not accurately reflect a carrier’s safety risk.
FMCSA Senior Transportation Specialist Bryan Price said to that end, FMCSA currently has in the works a redesigned version of its SMS website — where public scores are accessed — to try to more accurately portray scoring as it relates to safety and better highlight BASIC scores that correlate statistically with crash risk.
He also said the agency is looking at the possibility of changing its numeric scoring system to a high-medium-low system of scoring. The specificity in scoring, he says, draws attention away from the bigger picture of CSA’s goals.
Overdrive sister site CCJ has the full write-up on the panel, which includes more on Price’s comments and Mugno’s concerns, but also the concerns of Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance deputy executive director Collin Mooney about the quality of roadside inspection data and the overall inconsistencies of that data from state to state and inspector to inspector.