CSA roundup: Changes coming to safety program, analyst says; ‘We just want scores to make sense,’ says TCA rep

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CCJ sister site Overdrive’s Senior Editor Todd Dills was in attendance earlier this month at the Truckload Carriers Association Safety and Security Division meeting held in Charlotte, N.C., and CSA was the topic of choice among speakers and panel discussions.

You can see all of Overdrive’s coverage by clicking the links below:

An industry with a voice: Trucking’s opportunity to make itself heard over CSA

Geographically undesirable: Q&A with Indiana, S.C. enforcement reps

Analyst: CSA ‘sea change’ coming

Here’s a synopsis of some of the topics discussed, with links back to the stories covering them:

‘Sea change’ coming to CSA?

Dan Murray of the American Transportation Institute says the trucking industry’s movement of late to have CSA SMS scores removed from public view until the agency can fix them has “a lot of legitimacy,” he told attendees.

A “sea change in CSA” is coming in the next few years, Murray predicted, saying that the safety program will become useful to the industry. “The concept is great,” Murray said. “it’s the delivery that failed.”

The percentile rankings still are one of the program’s chief problems, Murray said. And according to recent ATRI research, nearly all shippers surveyed said they check CSA scores of their current carrier accounts and 100 percent said they check on prospective carrier accounts.

Click here to read more on Murray’s address.

Trucking’s voice needs to be heard on CSA

TCA Director of Safety and Policy Dave Heller said the industry needs to make its voice known to FMCSA about CSA and the problems it presents carriers and the industry.

During the last rewrite of the current hours-of-service rule, more than 28,000 comments were submitted about the rule during the public comment period — something the industry should repeat for CSA, Heller says. “We as an industry need to do more. We don’t mind being scored. We just want scores to make sense. They need to hear about the problems to the tune of 28,000 comments, but they haven’t.”

Click here to read more of what Heller told attendees.

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Geographical enforcement still an elephant in CSA’s room

“Dramatically different priorities and resources” among U.S. states create enforcement disparities that penalize carriers who run certain states regions much more than those who don’t, as reported heavily by CCJ in recent years.

And ATRI’s Murray posed this question: “Is it fair to have a standardized system” at the federal level that uses percentile scores based on those regional disparities?

Panelist Captain Jon Smithers of Indiana and Lieutenant Deal Dill of South Carolina also fielded questions from attendees during their panel discussion, including top causes for stops, attitudes of drivers and its influence on inspections and best practices for challenging violations in the DataQs system.

Click here to read that story.