FMCSA gets a Makeover

semi truck driving down highway

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced improvements to its Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program on August 24, 2012. These changes aim to strengthen the Agency’s ability to identify and address high-risk truck and bus companies based on compliance concerns. The updates mainly alter the manner in which cargo and speeding violations are handled, as well as how fatigued driving is categorized.

It’s All in the Numbers

Through the implementation of these updates, the FMCSA hopes to achieve better data collection, which will allow the Agency to more carefully monitor unsafe truck and bus companies to prevent tragic accidents. The FMCSA states that public input contributed to the updates. Per the FMCSA, specifics of the updates include:

  • Changing the Fatigued Driving BASIC to the more specific Hours-of-Service (HOS) Compliance BASIC to more accurately reflect violations in this area; and weighting HOS paper and electronic logbook violations equally.
  • Changing the Cargo-Related BASIC (Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Category) to the Hazardous Materials (HM) Compliance BASIC to better identify HM safety and compliance problems. Our analysis shows that this change will identify more carriers with HM concerns (33.8 percent versus 29.1 percent). Carriers and law enforcement can view this new BASIC in December. FMCSA will conduct further monitoring before it is made public.
  • Strengthening the Vehicle Maintenance BASIC by including cargo/load securement violations from today’s Cargo-Related BASIC.
  • Including intermodal equipment violations that should be found during drivers’ pre-trip inspections.
  • Removing 1 to 5 mph speeding violations to ensure citations are consistent with current speedometer regulations.
  • Ensuring all recorded violations accurately reflect the inspection type (i.e., only driver violations will be recorded under driver inspections).

These CSA changes are set to be implemented in December of this year.

FMCSA Joins Social Media

The FMCSA also joined Facebook, the world’s largest social media network, in an effort to further transparency of and communication with the Agency. “Like” the page to get the most up-to-date information about the FMCSA and related news, as well as to voice your comments and concerns.

While you’re at it, “likeThe Trucking Attorneys on Facebook, to ensure that experienced, skilled attorneys are right at your fingertips if you or someone you know ever needs legal help after a motor vehicle accident. We have successfully represented clients across the nation, and our successful case results speak for themselves.

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