1. Ensure compliance. Take action to address trends and patterns that you find.
Learn more about the safety regulations your company has violated by reviewing the regulations and the corresponding areas in the FMCSRs:
Review FMCSA's educational and technical assistance document, A Motor Carrier's Guide to Improving Highway Safety. This document contains useful information for both drivers and carriers.
NOTE: Please do not use this guide as a substitute for the FMCSRs. You should consult the FMCSRs, which are updated quarterly online.
2. Understand how your safety management contributes to your safety problems. Systematically assess your company's safety management practices and make improvements where necessary.
It is important for you to consider how safety will be achieved within your organization. Putting this in place begins with developing processes that incorporate safety into every aspect of your operation. Whether you are just starting out, or you have an established company, you should have safety-minded business practices. These will help make sure that you follow Federal regulations. Having these in place can save lives and reduce injuries. They can also improve your company's bottom line by saving time and money on paying fines and responding to regulatory compliance issues. They can also reduce the financial cost of crashes. FMCSA created a tool, the Safety Management Cycle (SMC) to help with this process. Carriers can download an overview of the SMC here: https://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/Documents/FMC_CSA_12_002_SMC_Overview.pdf and download a list of safety improvement practices that help resolve typical carrier process breakdowns related to each of the BASICs here: https://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/HelpCenter/Resources.aspx?type=topic&vID=44546. To help identify areas that are causing your safety breakdowns, use the SMC and ask yourself these questions:
POLICIES AND PROCEDURES — Operational rules and processes for a motor carrier and its employees.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES — Expectations and assignment of duties for a motor carrier and its employees.
QUALIFICATIONS AND HIRING — Finding and qualifying people for the defined roles and responsibilities.
TRAINING AND COMMUNICATION — Ongoing process to ensure that a motor carrier and its employees have the proper skills and knowledge to complete their jobs.
MONITORING AND TRACKING — Ensuring that a motor carrier and its employees are in compliance with policies and procedures and roles and responsibilities.
MEANINGFUL ACTION — Providing positive reinforcement for, or aiming at improving or correcting, employee behavior.
3. Check and update your MCS-150 carrier registration information.
4. Review your inspection and crash reports data and request corrections as needed. Review your reports through the SMS Website.
5. Educate yourself and your employees! Visit the Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) Website to learn more about CSA.
The Unsafe Driving BASIC includes operation of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in a dangerous or careless manner. Example violations include speeding, reckless driving, improper lane change, and inattention (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation Parts 392 and 397). The following Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) resources can help motor carriers improve their Unsafe Driving BASIC measure:
FMCSA created a tool, the Safety Management Cycle (SMC). The SMC helps carriers determine their organizational breakdowns that are causing the carriers' safety violations. The SMC has its own webpage located here: https://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/About/SMC_Overview.aspx. Carriers can download an overview of the SMC here: https://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/Documents/FMC_CSA_12_002_SMC_Overview.pdf and download a list of safety improvement practices that help resolve typical carrier process breakdowns related to the Unsafe Driving BASIC here: https://csa.fmcsa.dot.gov/Documents/FMC_CSA_12_019_UnsafeDriv_SMC.pdf.
There are several steps that carriers can take to successfully navigate the CSA program.
Check, update, and review your records:
Visit the CSA Website:
The new SMS data updates once a month. A snapshot of the data is taken on the third or last Friday of each month, and it takes approximately 10 days to process and validate the data before it is updated on the website. The snapshot date is located above the summary of the Behavior Analysis Safety Improvement Category percentile ranks in the SMS. The likely reason that your MCS-150 data is not up-to-date in SMS is that you made the change after the date of the snapshot.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulates all carriers throughout North America that haul loads over 10,000 lbs. and travel interstate. FMCSA also regulates carriers that haul hazardous materials intrastate. These are the carriers that are included in the SMS.
The SMS evaluates the safety of individual motor carriers by considering all safety-based roadside inspection violations, not just out-of service violations, as well as State-reported crashes, using 24 months of performance data.
Any violation or crash that occurred within the previous 24 months of performance data is considered when determining the Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Category (BASIC) measure. However, inspections, violations, and crashes are time weighted when they are included in the SMS calculations. Events that have occurred within 6 months of the SMS run date receive the highest time weight (they are multiplied times 3), events greater than 6 months but less than or equal to 12 months are assigned less time weight (they are multiplied times 2), and events that occurred greater than 12 months from the SMS run date are assigned the smallest time weight (they are multiplied times 1). Details are explained in the SMS Methodology document.
Carriers are evaluated only on inspections and crashes associated with their own U.S. DOT Number, so only violations that a driver receives while working for a motor carrier apply to that carrier's SMS evaluation. Therefore, the driver's violation history before the driver is hired and after the driver's employment is terminated will not impact a motor carrier's SMS results. However, even if a motor carrier terminates a driver, all of the driver's crashes and inspection results that he or she received while operating for that carrier still apply to the carrier's SMS evaluation for 24 months from the date of occurrence. Because the data is time-weighted, the effect of those occurrences on the motor carrier's percentile rank will diminish over the course of the 24 months.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) promotes the electronic collection of inspection data by providing the software and grants for laptops to States. In general, States that are not already collecting inspection data electronically are moving in this direction. To further provide incentives to States, FMCSA has created inspection data performance measures to raise awareness of the relative speed at which States upload inspection reports. In addition, FMCSA has provided online tools to help States diagnose the reasons for any untimely submission of inspection reports. Nearly 95 percent of the over 3 million inspections conducted annually are uploaded to the FMCSA Website within FMCSA's 21-day standard.