Keeping your drivers safe is integral to increasing your CSA score. This can be done by implementing electronic DVIRs and avoiding unsafe driving practices. You can also make safety a priority in your company. These tips will help you improve your CSA score and your company’s safety culture.
Prevent Unsafe Driving Violations
One of the easiest ways to improving CSA scores is to avoid unsafe driving violations. This is where a positive safety culture is critical. By promoting safe driving, carriers can increase their CSA scores and avoid costly litigation. In addition, CSA scores are essential to a company’s financial performance, so it is vital to improving safety.
CSA scores are calculated monthly and are influenced by the behavior of individual drivers. Sometimes, a violation, such as not wearing a seatbelt, can add as many as 21 points to a driver’s score. In addition, speeding violations, lane changes, cell phone use, and improper parking can lower a company’s score.
CSA scores are a reflection of a carrier’s overall safety culture. Therefore, companies should invest in a comprehensive safety program, including ongoing driver training to improve scores. Then, they should review any harsh driving incidents to determine whether there was a pattern of unsafe driving.
Furthermore, fleet tracking systems can provide a better understanding of driver behavior and analytics on problematic patterns.
Maintain a Clean Driving Record
One of the most critical factors for CSA scores is to have a clean driving record. Accidents and violations found during a roadside inspection are recorded for three years. A poor CSA score can negatively impact a driver’s career and potential earnings.
Similarly, a poor score can prevent a driver from being hired for a specific job.
CSA scores are closely tied to the Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) score. A driver’s PSP rating is maintained by the FMCSA and gives employers electronic access to the driver’s crash and inspection history. Driver PSP data also includes any violations reported against the driver’s carrier.
In addition to maintaining a clean driving record, drivers must also abide by the regulations regarding their business. This includes using ELDs, obeying traffic control devices, and using caution in hazardous situations.
Additionally, violating CSA regulations governing service hours may result in CSA points deductions. Finally, drivers should also avoid driving while tired or sick.
Implement Electronic DVIRs
One of the best ways to improve your CSA scores is by implementing electronic DVIRs. These reports are mandated by the US Department of Transportation’s Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986 and the Motor Vehicle Safety Act of Canada. They provide information about the history of each driver and the vehicle. They also help identify whether a CMV is in excellent working condition. The law states that inspections must be conducted every seven days for commercial vehicles and every 94 hours for hazardous materials transport operations.
Using an electronic DVIR can also save time and effort for motor carriers. Traditional DVIRs require two hands to complete, which can be challenging while inspecting a vehicle. Electronic DVIRs allow drivers to complete the form on their smartphone or tablet. In this way, they can ensure that the car is safe while freeing up their time to perform higher-priority tasks.
Electronic DVIRs instantly route the report to the service department when a defect is reported.
Moreover, the messages can contain photos, which speed up the evaluation and repair process.
Make Safety a Core Focus of Your Company
As a trucking company, you probably know that your CSA score is directly related to your drivers’ safety. That means you must make security a core focus of your business, from driver training to fleet tracking. Doing so can improve your scores and avoid an inspection by the DOT.
Your CSA score is closely tied to the decisions and actions of your entire company. Like your credit score, improving your score requires making intelligent decisions over a long period. Making safety a core focus of your company is the first step to achieving an excellent CSA score. It begins with an internal review and a well-planned strategy. From there, it’s time to implement new processes and procedures to improve your score.
Safety must be a top priority for all corporate leaders. Your executives should be fully aware of your significant risks and mitigation plans. Many executives have policies that require their direct reports to report any serious incident.