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July 29, 2015 2:00 PM, EDT

ATA Continues to Call for Revision of CSA Scoring System

American Trucking Associations is again calling for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to improve its Compliance, Safety, Accountability carrier monitoring system.

ATA notes what while it has supported the goals of CSA since its launch, it takes issue with the way FMCSA administers the program and the data it uses.

“After having a year to consider the recommendation from the National Transportation Safety Board-requested independent review team to distinguish form and manner violations from those that cause crashes, FMCSA appears to have dismissed it out of hand,” said Rob Abbott, ATA vice president of safety policy. “We find this very troubling because the agency is missing an opportunity to improve safety by placing more focus on high-risk carriers.”

The data FMCSA used to compute CSA scores was found to be problematic by a DOT-appointed independent review team, the Government Accountability Office and Congress. One of the main criticisms was that it often had little relationship to future crash risk and created a misleading portrayal of a carrier’s safety record.

“ATA has repeatedly called on the agency to remove the scores CSA produces from public view while it fixes these serious issues,” ATA President Bill Graves said. “Ironically, while Congress is putting final touches on legislation to require that FMCSA take this step, the agency is only proposing superficial changes to the system and actually suggests making more flawed data public.”

ATA said that meaningful changes to the safety measurement system will involve more than a few tweaks, recommending that FMCSA focuses on violations that have the strongest correlation to crash risk and gathers data on fleets whose performance cannot be measured by the safety measurement system.

ATA filed the comments to FMCSA on July 29.