FMCSA may face trouble in assessing carrier safety scores
Story by: John Gallagher
A federal watchdog has warned the trucking industry’s top regulator that more changes are needed to improve how it evaluates carrier safety compliance.
In a 27-page report made available on September 27, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) asserted that while a safety action plan by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) partially addresses issues identified in a National Academy of Sciences (NAS) study, “it lacks implementation details for improving transparency and its assessment of carrier safety rankings.”
The NAS study, issued in June 2017, made six recommendations to help FMCSA improve the accuracy of its carrier prioritization methodology that’s used in its Compliance, Safety and Accountability (CSA) program. Carriers that have scores above certain thresholds can receive enforcement interventions that range from warning letters to onsite investigations.
The OIG conducted its evaluation over the last year to see if FMCSA’s action plan addressed the NAS recommendations, as required under the FAST Act legislation that became law in 2015.
One recommendation FMCSA has been addressing is that it use a statistical model known as item response theory (IRT) to replace its current safety measurement system (SMS) for prioritizing carrier safety interventions. FMCSA confirmed in the OIG report that it plans to complete testing of the IRT model by September 30 and decide whether to adopt it by September 2020. According to John Gallagher, Washington Correspondent @ freightwaves.com
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Source and credits: freightwaves.com / John Gallagher, Washington Correspondent / iTrucker / Mario Pawlowski