Nine states, including Missouri, have been testing the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s new safety enforcement program, CSA 2010, to generally favorable reviews. Now, though, with the program scheduled to go into full swing in November, some in the trucking industry are worried that the program is moving too quickly and that some tweaking needs to be done.
Specifically, those that are concerned about the program are worried that there will be issues with the way the new data is released to the public. Part of the changes with the new program are the way tractor-trailer crashes are tracked and reported to the public. Each driver and company is given safety ratings based on a number of factors, including results of random tests and crash history, and these ratings will be made public.
If everything were to go as scheduled, a lot of the new data from the test states would be made public in November, with the other states officially joining the program after that. Many companies in non-test states have already started to transition to the new CSA procedures to make the process smoother.
The problem, says representatives from the Transport Corporation of America and other industry groups, is that this early data needs to be examined to make sure it accurately reflects the actual ratings of the companies it’s tracking. If the data or ratings system is flawed, they say, it could turn public opinion against the program by giving a false impression of the number of truck accidents in Missouri and other states. They want to make sure that all the data is thoroughly scrutinized before going public. A University of Michigan study is being conducted on the testing procedures to make sure they produce accurate results, but that report won’t be ready until December.
Representatives for the FMCSA say they are confident in the data, and any errors discovered by the study would only require minor tweaks and public data on truck accidents already exists. The new program just changes the rating systems.
The most important thing in this process is that the data collected is accurate. One of the best ways to curb the rate of tractor-trailer accident injuries is to hold negligent drivers and companies responsible.
If you have questions about a truck accident case of your own and would like legal advice, contact a St. Louis truck accident lawyer for a free consultation.