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3.2 Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) Program

CSA is FMCSA’s data-driven safety compliance and enforcement program, which monitors the safety performance of all carriers registered with FMCSA throughout the life of the carrier’s business. FMCSA and State law enforcement organizations use CSA to identify, prioritize, and intervene with motor carriers that pose a safety risk on U.S. roadways.

CSA has three core components:

  • The Safety Measurement System (SMS)
    The SMS collects and analyzes data from inspections, investigations, and crash reports (from the last two years) to prioritize carriers for FMCSA interventions (e.g., warning letters, investigations). Carriers are encouraged to view and monitor their safety data on the SMS Website. Law enforcement officials use the information in the SMS to help determine whether additional action is required when they encounter a CMV during a traffic stop. If a carrier believes data in the SMS is incorrect, it can request a data review using FMCSA’s DataQs process.
  • Interventions Process
    An intervention is an action, such as a warning letter or investigation that may be taken when a carrier’s safety performance indicates a potential safety risk. The interventions process evaluates why safety problems occur, recommends remedies, encourages corrective action, and when necessary, assesses penalties for carriers that fail to comply.
  • Safety Ratings Process
    A safety rating is an evaluation of a motor carrier’s compliance with the safety fitness standard in 49 CFR 385.5. FMCSA issues a safety rating only after an onsite investigation. FMCSA may issue one of three safety ratings (Satisfactory, Conditional, Unsatisfactory). Final safety ratings are publicly available. FMCSA does not issue safety ratings to drivers.
  • Carriers can visit the CSA Help Center to access resources to help them understand the interventions, and use the Safety Management Cycle to identify process breakdowns that may have contributed to the safety problem.

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