Understanding Your Fleet’s CSA Score

17 Sep 2018

Your CSA (compliance, safety, accountability) score can have a huge impact on your fleet operations and expenses. The better you understand your score, the more quickly you can get your fleet’s CSA score where you want it to be to offer maximum benefit.

What Factors Into Your CSA Score?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) uses data obtained from roadside inspections and crash reports over the last two years to determine your CSA score. That data is organized into the following categories:

  1. Unsafe driving. Does your fleet have a history of unsafe driving violations, like speeding, improper lane changes, or even of drivers failing to wear seatbelts?
  2. Compliance with hours of service. How well are you keeping up with HOS regulations?
  3. The fitness of drivers. Do your drivers have adequate experience, education, and health to operate your vehicles?
  4. Violations involving alcohol or controlled substances. Impaired driving violations are costly for your fleet. Create policies that strictly prohibit impaired driving.
  5. Vehicle maintenance. How well do you maintain your vehicles and secure your loads?
  6. Crash indicators. What is the history of state-reported crashes with your carrier?
  7. Compliance concerning hazardous materials. Do you take your responsibilities when transporting hazardous materials seriously?

These numbers are updated once each month to ensure that you’re always operating with the latest scores and so you know where you stand. You can use GPS fleet tracking to assist you in your efforts to improve your CSA score by

  • Automatically scheduling routine maintenance
  • Setting up alerts when drivers speed
  • Logging driver hours behind the wheel to ensure compliance,
  • Notifying you of other driver behavior consistent with impaired, distracted, or sleepy driving to prevent unnecessary accidents and more.

How Does the Score Work?

Some carriers find the CSA scoring system a little complex. All carriers are assigned numbers between 0 and 100. These numbers reflect the percentage of trucking companies who scored higher than your company in a specific group.

What this means is that if your score was 25, only 25 percent of other carriers or companies scored higher than your organization. On the other hand, if your CSA score is 75, that means you have a lot of work to do as 75 percent of your competitors had higher CSA scores in a category than your organization.

Typically scores between 0 and 49 are considered satisfactory scores with scores between 50 and 74 qualifying as conditional scores. Scores between 75 and 100 are unsatisfactory and indicate you have a lot of work to do to improve your situation and your score.

The Takeaway

The great thing about this system is that every month offers opportunities for improvement. Now that you understand your CSA score better, you have an opportunity to affect your score, for the better, in the months to come.

Stay tuned for future articles on Why Good CSA Scores Matter, How and When to Check Your Fleet’s CSA Scores, and Ways to Improve Your CSA Score.

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