What is it?
A measure of the safety performance of fleets and drivers and fleet roadworthiness. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) provides each company’s safety data online via the Safety Measurement System (SMS) under the CSA Progam. CSA stands for Compliance, Safety, Accountability and is the safety compliance and enforcement program of the FMCSA that holds motor carriers and drivers accountable for their role in safety. CSA affects motor carriers, including owner-operators, by identifying those with safety problems to prioritize them for interventions such as warning letters and investigations. CSA affects drivers because their safety performance and compliance impact their safety records and, while working for a carrier, will impact their carrier’s safety record.
Who is interested?
Fleet & Safety Managers, Dispatchers, Brokers and Shippers
What does it tell me?
FMCSA updates the SMS once a month with data from roadside inspections, including driver and vehicle violations; crash reports from the last two years; and investigation results. The SMS considers the number of safety violations and inspections, the severity of safety violations or crashes, when the safety violations occurred, with recent events weighted more heavily, the number of trucks/buses a carrier operates, the number of vehicle miles traveled and acute and critical violations found during investigations.
FMCSA organizes the SMS data into seven Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs):
Unsafe Driving: VIOUSD
Unsafe Driving Speeding, reckless driving, improper lane change, inattention, no seatbelts
Hours of Service: VIOHOS
Hours-of-Service Compliance Noncompliance with HOS regulations, including logbooks
Driver Fitness: VIODRF
Driver Fitness Invalid license, medically unfit to operate a CMV
Drugs and Alcohol: VIOCTS
Controlled Substances/ Alcohol Use/possession of controlled substances/alcohol
Vehicle Maintenance: VIOVMA
Vehicle Maintenance Brakes, lights, defects, failure to make required repairs
Hazardous Materials Compliance Leaking containers, improper packaging and/or placarding (Not Public)
Total Insurance/Other Compliance Violations Reported to FMCSA
In addition to the seven CSA Basic indicators, the data is also broken out by the following:
DoT Recordable Accidents per 10,000 state highway miles (Ticker: APHS) to determine the DoT Recordable Accident rate rather than just a pure count of accidents. This is a better indicator of accident probability at the state level as it factors in varying enforcement levels, population density, traffic conditions, road type and traffic flows. The data is also displayed at the state level (Ticker: APS).