The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and State Partners use measurement
results to identify carriers for Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) interventions.
These interventions offer an expanded suite of tools ranging from warning letters
to onsite comprehensive investigations. These tools supplement the former labor-intensive
compliance review (CR) to better address the specific safety problems identified.
CSA investigators are equipped to systematically evaluate why safety problems are
occurring, recommend remedies, encourage corrective action(s), and, where corrective
action is inadequate, invoke strong penalties. Interventions provide carriers with
the information necessary to understand their safety problems and to change unsafe
behavior early on. Interventions under CSA are categorized into early contact,
investigation, and follow-on, which are described in detail bellow.
Warning Letter - Correspondence sent to
a carrier's place of business that specifically identifies an alerted Behavior Analysis
and Safety Improvement Category (BASIC) and outlines possible consequences of continued
safety problems. The warning letter provides instructions for accessing carrier
safety data and measurement as well as a point-of-contact.
Carrier Access to Safety Data and Measurement - Carriers have access
to their measurement results (BASICs scores), as well as the inspection reports
and violations that went into those results. With this information, carriers can
chart a course of self-improvement. Carriers can also monitor this data for accuracy
and challenge it as necessary through FMCSA’s DataQs system:
Targeted Roadside Inspection - CSA provides roadside inspectors
with data that identifies a carrier’s specific safety problems, by BASIC, based
on the new measurement system. Targeted roadside inspections occur at permanent
and temporary roadside inspection locations where connectivity to the SMS information
is available. As Commercial Vehicle Information Systems and Networks (CVISN) technologies
evolve, they will be incorporated into the roadside inspections.
Offsite Investigation - A carrier is required to submit documents
to FMCSA or a State Partner. These documents are used to evaluate the safety problems
identified through the SMS and to determine their root causes. Types of documents
requested may include third-party documents such as toll receipts, border crossing
records, or drug testing records. The goal is to identify issues responsible for
may be subject to an onsite investigation or to subpoena records (see below).
Onsite Focused Investigation - The purpose of this intervention
is to evaluate the safety problems identified through the SMS and their root causes.
An onsite focused investigation may be selected when alerts in one or two BASICs
exist. Onsite "focused" investigations target specific problem areas (for example,
maintenance records), while onsite "comprehensive" investigations address all aspects
of the carrier’s operation.
Onsite Comprehensive Investigation - This intervention is similar
to a CR and takes place at the carrier’s place of business. It is used when the
carrier exhibits broad and complex safety problems through continually alerted BASICs,
worsening multiple BASICs (three or more), or a fatal crash or complaint.
Cooperative Safety Plan (CSP) - Implemented by the carrier, this
safety improvement plan is voluntary. The carrier and FMCSA collaboratively create
a plan based on a standard template to address the underlying problems resulting
from the carrier's substandard safety performance.
Notice of Violation (NOV) - The NOV is a formal notice of safety
alerts that requires a response from the carrier. It is used when the regulatory
violations discovered are severe enough to warrant formal action but not a civil
penalty (i.e., a fine). It is also used in cases where the violation is immediately
correctable and the level of, or desire for, cooperation is high. To avoid further
intervention, including fines, the carrier must provide evidence of corrective action
or initiate a successful challenge to the violation.
Notice of Claim (NOC) - An NOC is issued in cases where the regulatory
violations are severe enough to warrant assessment and issuance of civil penalties.
Operations Out-of-Service Order (OOS) - An OOS order is an order
requiring the carrier to cease all motor vehicle operations.