WASHINGTON — An industry update put out Thursday by the American Trucking Associations says that “full implementation” of the Comprehensive Safety Analysis 2010 Initiative (CSA 2010) will be delayed to 2011, but the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration insists the “launch” will not be delayed until next year.
So what’s the difference and what does this mean for carriers and drivers? That’s hard to say.
Details from the government agency responsible for regulating truck safety are hard to come by, short of the promise that details are coming. Meanwhile, some industry leaders are concerned the ATA report could mislead carriers into believing they’ve been granted a reprieve from the long-planned federal truck safety scoring program.
“As part of FMCSA’s commitment to launch a comprehensive and effective CSA 2010 program, the agency is in the process of incorporating the feedback received from partners and stakeholders in the CSA 2010 pilot states,” said an FMCSA statement provided in response to the ATA report. “In the coming weeks, the agency expects to issue a Federal Register notice that will address the CSA 2010 implementation timeline and data preview for commercial motor carriers.”
CSA 2010 is the carrier safety assessment plan designed to pick up where the current SafeStat system seems to have come up short. In a nutshell, the key components of CSA 2010 are its measurement system, the new, broader array of interventions, and a new safety fitness determinations method. Additionally, the agency intends to have a greater emphasis on drivers under CSA 2010.
The new system has been tested in a handful of pilot states, and was expected to roll out nationwide beginning in July. At the Mid-America Trucking Show last week, however, FMCSA indicated the program would get underway in additional states by this fall.
According to the ATA’s recent newsletter, “full implementation will not be completed until spring or perhaps summer of 2011.”
And while the FMCSA is expected to make CSA 2010 data available to carriers later this month, ATA reports the preview will be “limited,” featuring roadside inspections and crashes — but it will not reflect carriers’ scores in the Behavioral Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs), the heart of the new system.
Beginning Nov. 30, carriers and the general public will be able to view more complete CSA 2010 Carrier Safety Measurement System (CSMS) data, including scores in each of the BASICs, said the ATA notice, citing FMCSA.
Also at that time, FMCSA will begin issuing warning letters to deficient carriers, but “will not utilize the full range of planned CSA 2010 interventions.” Instead, FMCSA will use the CSMS data “to prioritize” carriers for standard on-site compliance reviews, ATA said.
An FMCSA spokesman said the agency “could not confirm” the ATA report, and referred again to the promise of an upcoming official notice.
Still, uncertainty as to specifics doesn’t mean truckers can afford to put off educating themselves about CSA 2010, as the government continues to collect the roadside inspection data that will make up a carrier’s score — whenever the program goes online.
The ATA newsletter “could be a disservice to the industry to make companies believe they can put the program on the back burner,” said Arkansas Trucking Association President Lane Kidd, who reported receiving calls from members with questions about the timeline change and its impact. “They cannot.”
Kevin Jones of The Trucker staff can be reached for comment at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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