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PMAA Urges Chao to Reform Carrier Safety Fitness Program


PMAA joined other industries this week in asking DOT Secretary Chao to rescind the Safety Fitness Determination NPRM until FMCSA completes reforms to the Compliance, Safety and Accountability (CSA) program/Safety Measurement System (SMS).

Last year, the FMCSA issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking: “Carrier Safety Fitness Determination.” The current safety fitness rating system ranks carriers as Satisfactory, Conditional or Unsatisfactory based on a comprehensive safety compliance review. The proposal would radically modify the Safety Fitness rating system in which carriers are evaluated for both the enforcement community and the general public. The new methodology would be based on on-road safety data using five of the Agency’s seven Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs); an investigation, which will consider all seven BASICs, or a combination of on-road safety data and investigation information. The proposed new system would remove all of the existing ratings and create only one rating, “Unfit.”

Our primary concern with the proposal is that the methodology utilizes flawed CSA/SMS data and scores, which Congress directed the agency to review and reform just months earlier in the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Systems Act (FAST Act) enacted in December of 2015.

While we support the goal of an easily understandable, rational safety fitness determination system, this proposal is built on a flawed foundation. FMCSA must complete reforms to the CSA/SMS system before proceeding to a new method of evaluating safety fitness of carriers.

Transportation Advocacy Federal

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