Understanding CSA And SAFER Scoring System

Topic 8767 | Page 1

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OshagHennesy's Comment
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Hi ladies and gents. I'm trying to do a little investigating of my own into a few companies. I really want to understand how companies are rated according to the CSA and SAFER systems so that I can make a good decision about a company. I feel that it is important to know because it gives me a little insight into how serious a company takes safety. If they are having a lot of targeted inspections that means that they may not be training the drivers all that well or that the driver just doesn't care. It's also important to know how well a company maintains their equipment. When ever I do finally get an interview, I want to have a better idea of how this works so I can speak intelligently when I talk about research I've done for that particular company. Am I over-thinking it?

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

Brett Aquila's Comment
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Daryl, you're not overthinking it and everything you said makes logical sense. But there are factors you haven't taken into consideration.

If a company hires new drivers straight out of school they're going to have lower CSA scores than a company that hires experienced drivers. Not only will new drivers get in more accidents, but they also won't be as savvy about talking their way out of getting tickets. Believe me, I have wiggled out of all sorts of tickets I deserved over the years and so has every experienced driver.

Personally I feel the CSA scores give little or no usable insights into the quality of a company. If I were looking for a job today I doubt I would even bother to glance at the scores of the companies I was considering.

What I would look at is:

1) How much home time do I want?

2) What type of freight do I want to haul?

3) What job duties am I interested in? For example do I want to unload freight, tarp loads, or go into New York City?

After narrowing it down to a handful of companies that seem to suit me well I would compare pay & benefits and then ask the recruiters about any little perks the company may offer. Maybe they offer extra vacation time, give their experienced drivers nicer trucks, or allow you to choose between several available loads instead of forced dispatch. Every company has its own little perks and sometimes they can make a big difference.

Trucking companies are like a team sport where you need a ton of people working together to keep the company functioning. But when it comes to CSA scores it really depends on the individual drivers themselves. Are drivers doing safety inspections? Are they running their mouths to law enforcement and getting written up? Are they getting in wrecks?

The CSA score is really a cumulative score which reflects the quality of the drivers a company has far more so than it reflects upon the quality of the company itself, their equipment, or their attitude toward safety.

CSA:

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA)

The CSA is a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) initiative to improve large truck and bus safety and ultimately reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities that are related to commercial motor vehicle

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

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