To some carriers, a good CSA score is little more than an “Atta-Boy!” and a slap on the back, but to a more astute one, it’s a way to stay in business. A good CSA score will give access to preferred loads and entitle a carrier to huge discounts on their insurance. On the other hand, a bad CSA score could get a carrier slapped with an out-of-service order.
Unfortunately, many carriers don’t understand CSA scores or what a good one will do for them. That’s due primarily to the system’s complexity and the frequent changes that take place in the program. This article is provided to discover this info here and how to change it.
What is a CSA Score and What Does It Mean?
The CSA program was created to identify high-risk commercial carriers. The program’s goal is to help prevent accidents with proactive intervention and make carriers more accountable for safety standards.
To accomplish this goal, the Safety Measurement System (SMS) was created a database that includes data from every carrier’s roadside inspections, accidents, and investigator’s reports from the past two years. This data is kept on a carrier’s DOT record for the previous two years.
Once data is obtained, it is organized and presented in seven categories. These include driver fitness, unsafe driving, vehicle maintenance, hours-of-service compliance, and more.
After the SMS collects this data, it is put together to create a cumulative score and rank them on a percentile from 0 to 100. The higher the score, the worse the performance. With these final scores, the DOT can determine whether an intervention is warranted.
How Are SMS Rankings Determined?
Carriers are scored and given percentiles based on the number and severity of their violations and accidents, according to realtimecampaign.com. Other factors, such as how recent the violation or accident occurred, are also factored into the score. This tends to even smaller and larger truckers based on miles driven.
For example, a carrier with two violations in three inspections will probably be ranked higher (Note: higher score means more dangerous) than a carrier who has three violations in 10 inspections. Software from companies like Tenstreet can help here.
It should also be noted that some violations carry a higher score than others. These include a driver operating a mobile phone or texting (10 points) compared with an improper lane change or following too close (either is 5 points). Squelch high CSA scores to broaden your insurance options.
Another factor in determining the final CSA score is the period of the violations, with violations that have taken place in the past six months being multiplied by three, or those that have occurred in the past 12 to 24 months counting only once.
For a more detailed review of violations and their weighting, readers should check the Safety Measurement System SMS Methodology. Anyone who wishes to check the CSA score of their company can enter their DOT number at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.