ATA: Agency data doesn’t yield ‘meaningful’ scores

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability safety scoring program “lacks sufficient data on the majority of the industry to render meaningful scores for most motor carriers,” says the American Trucking Association in an announcement this week promoting its latest white paper. 

The announcement says that the FMCSA says it has only enough data to provide a score in at least one category to 12 percent of active carriers, but that these carriers are involved in 83 percent of accidents, says FMCSA, which is one of the major concerns for ATA, says ATA President Bill Graves, because “FMCSA doesn’t really know how many commercial motor vehicle crashes are occurring or who is involved in them. Many crashes simply don’t get reported to the agency,” he says.

ATA says that research done by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Institute “confirmed this limitation,” saying that UM’s research shows that some states do a good job of reporting crashes but that others do a poor job. “For example,” the announcement says, “UMTRI found several states report less than 75% of their truck crashes to FMCSA.”

“The foundation of CSA is scores that reflect measures of comparative performance,” Graves said. “The fact that the government lacks data to score the vast majority of the industry in most categories calls into question not only the assumptions of those who don’t have enough data to get scored, but those who do.”