What's Happening with the CSA Safety Measurement Scores?
Trucking companies just want to be trucking companies that get freight shipped where it needs to go, and drivers just want to do their job in getting it done. As in every business that serves this country, there are federal mandates that must be met, which include driver health screening, truck maintenance procedures and safety ratings of the company and drivers. These safety ratings are a major issue.
Compliance, Safety and Accountability ratings, or CSA for short, determine insurance rates, judicial lawsuits in case of an accident, and perhaps most importantly, gives a client the potential to pick and choose a freight company based on their safety record.
These ratings are based on truck maintenance, driver health histories and accidents. The problem is that there are difficulties getting this information out. Drivers might drive most of their tenure without an accident and maintenance might be done that isn't logged in. And when that happens, the ratings go askew.
The scores tallied affect companies in 3 distinct categories. Satisfactory, conditional and unrated. Most small business trucking firms fell into the latter two categories of conditional, or worse, unrated. In fact, nearly half-a-million independents received the "unrated" rating, which means virtually nothing. They could be better than the most satisfactory scored major trucking businesses, but it would never show in the scores.
Removing the Scores
In the latest trucking bill a victory has been won. The CSA rating scores have been removed from the public, leveling the playing field for all trucking businesses, both corporate and owner/operators. Until such time as ratings can be fairly addressed and corroborated, in every aspect, the scores will be a non-factor when choosing a freight company to haul goods.
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