With Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), together with State Partners and industry, is working to further reduce commercial motor vehicle (CMV) crashes, fatalities, and injuries on our nation’s highways.

CSA Scope

CSA introduces a new enforcement and compliance model that allows FMCSA and its State Partners to more efficiently contact a larger number of carriers to address safety problems before crashes occur. Rolled out in December 2010, the program establishes a new nationwide system for making the roads safer for motor carriers and the public alike.

Within the CSA Operational Model, the Safety Measurement System (SMS) quantifies the on-road safety performance of carriers and drivers to identify candidates for interventions, determine the specific safety problems  a carrier or driver exhibits, and to monitor whether safety problems are improving or worsening. SMS has replaced SafeStat in the new Operational Model and uses a motor carrier’s data from roadside inspections, including all safety-based violations, state-reported crashes, and the federal motor carrier census to quantify performance in the following Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs):


  • Unsafe Driving — Operation of commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) by drivers in a dangerous or careless manner. Example violations: Speeding, reckless driving, improper lane change, and inattention. (FMCSR Parts  392 and 397 )
  • Fatigued Driving (Hours-of-Service) — Operation of CMVs by drivers who are ill, fatigued, or in non-compliance with the Hours-of-Service (HOS) regulations. This BASIC includes violations of regulations pertaining to logbooks as they relate to HOS requirements and the management of CMV driver fatigue. Example violations: Exceeding HOS, maintaining an incomplete or inaccurate logbook, and operating a CMV while ill or fatigued. (FMCSR Parts 392 and 395 )
  • Driver Fitness— Operation of CMVs by drivers who are unfit to operate a CMV due to lack of training, experience, or medical qualifications. Example violations: Failure to have a valid and appropriate commercial driver’s license (CDL) and being medically unqualified to operate a CMV. (FMCSR Parts 383 and 391 )
  • Controlled Substances/Alcohol — Operation of CMVs by drivers who are impaired due to alcohol, illegal drugs, and misuse of prescription or over-the-counter medications. Example violations: Use or possession of controlled substances/alcohol. (FMCSR Parts 382 and 392)
  • Vehicle Maintenance — Failure to properly maintain a CMV. Example violations: Brakes, lights, and other mechanical defects, and failure to make required repairs. (FMCSR Parts 393 and 396)
  • Cargo-Related — Failure to properly prevent shifting loads, spilled or dropped cargo, overloading, and unsafe handling of hazardous materials on a CMV. Example violations: Improper load securement, cargo retention, and hazardous material handling. (FMCSR Parts 392, 393, 397 and HM Violations)
  • Crash Indicator— Histories or patterns of high crash involvement, including frequency and severity. It is based on information from State-reported crashes.


Each BASIC Measurements Depends on the Following:

  • The number of adverse safety events (violations related to that BASIC or crashes)
  • The severity of violations or crashes
  • When the adverse safety events occurred (more recent events are weighted more heavily).

After a measurement is determined, the carrier is then placed in a peer group (e.g., other carriers with similar numbers of inspections). Percentiles from 0 to 100 are then determined by comparing the BASIC measurements of the carrier to the measurements of other carriers in the peer group. A percentile 100 indicates the worst performance.

Updated guidelines released December 2012 click below link:

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