Software Helps Truckers Cope with CSA 2010
May 25, 2010 Alex Woodie
TMW Systems and Qualcomm last week unveiled new software designed to keep their trucking company customers from running afoul of the federal government’s controversial new Comprehensive Safety Analysis (CSA 2010) driver safety program. The new software is designed to help carriers familiarize themselves with the government’s complex new driver-ratings program, which some carriers are afraid will lead to unnecessary sanctions against their drivers.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) designed the new CSA 2010 program to improve the safety of large trucks and buses and reduce the rate of crashes, injuries, and deaths associated with crashes of commercial vehicles. Under the program, which is expected to be fully implemented in all 50 states by the end of the year, commercial drivers will, for the first time, be assigned their own driver safety rating. This greater level of scrutiny of driving records and “behavior” is designed to help identify problem drivers before they get into a crash.
The CSA 2010 program collects much more driver-related data than under the previous Safestat program. Four of the seven monitoring areas in CSA 2010–unsafe driving, fatigued driving, driver fitness, and controlled substance and alcohol use–will be used to rate commercial operators and identify potentially unsafe drivers. The other three areas relate to vehicle maintenance, improper loading of cargo, and crash indicators.
While CSA 2010 is currently only being tested in a handful of states, trucking company executives around the country are already gearing up to deal with the new regulations, which some industry insiders say could lead to unnecessary sanctions against hundreds of thousands of drivers. This is where TWM Systems and Qualcomm–which supply enterprise software and satellite tracking-hardware for many of the largest trucking firms in the world–steps in with new CSA management offerings.
TMW’s new CSA Management Web service was designed to work with data gathered under the CSA 2010 program. Once customers obtain access to their CSA 2010 data via the FMCSA Web site, they can get to work analyzing and transforming the data with the CSA Management tool.
The goals of the CSA Management tool are to provide carriers with insight into what data the government is looking at, and, if necessary, to prepare the carrier to challenge the government if it suspects it is using erroneous data.
CSA management will help carriers protect their governmental safety standings and promote a culture of safety, says David Wangler, president and CEO of the Cleveland, Ohio, company.
“Our CSA Management on-line service will further help carriers monitor their all-important CSA safety ratings to stay on top of potentially negative trends, identify specific problem areas requiring attention and even spot data inaccuracies that may warrant challenge,” he says.
Meanwhile, Qualcomm unveiled its new CSA 2010 Safety Performance Service, which is powered by FleetRisk Advisors The Driving Cent software. Due to become available in the fall, the new offering will combine information from the CSA 2010 database with vehicle-specific safety performance information gathered by Qualcomm devices.
Like the TMW offering, Qualcomm’s new service focuses on proactively identifying problems before the Feds take action. The offering will include “driver coaching scripts” to assist drivers and managers to “remediate noncompliant behavior,” as well as scorecard and predictive analytics.
Qualcomm will help to fight the greater complexity of the CSA 2010 regulation with more sophisticated analysis tools. Its new service will be able to help fleet managers “review each driver’s performance data in the context of their individual duty assignments, with optional views that enable fleet managers to normalize incident data according to miles traveled and trips completed,” the company says. “Additionally, fleet managers can view data by the FMCSA-mandated method of comparing incidents across peer groups of fleets with similar numbers of power units and by a time-based weighted system.”
For more information, visit TMW Systems’ Web site at www.tmwsystems.com or Qualcomm Transportation Services’ homepage at www.qualcomm.com/products_services/mobile_content_services/enterprise/index.html.