Federal Tracking Program Tries to Avoid Commercial Truck Accidents
If you’re the average driver in greater El Paso, the term Compliance, Safety and Accountability (CSA) may not ring a bell in terms of road safety. The CSA is a tracking program orchestrated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and applies to large commercial vehicles and trucking companies.
Under this program, each fleet is given a score based on their compliance with safety standards. When a federal safety violation is committed, points are issued. If a fleet receives too many points, it may prompt an investigation by the FMCSA.
Safety violations are categorized and range from inadequate fitness to outright dangerous driving habits.
Dangerous driving habits
A fleet may receive a maximum of 10 points per violation. On the upper end of the point scale, common driver violations include:
- Driving recklessly
- Exceeding the speed limit by 15 m.p.h. or more
- Driving too fast in construction zones
- Continuing to operate a vehicle after being declared out of service
- Drug possession
- Drug impairment
On the lower end of the point system, violations include:
- Ignoring traffic signals or traffic control devices
- Following too close to another vehicle
- Improper passing or lane changing
- Failing to yield the right-of-way
- Driving on an interstate while under age 21
- Not being physically qualified for the job
While safety violations caused by dangerous driving habits may be primary factors in truck accidents, omission to provide required records, logs, paperwork, and vehicle maintenance can contribute to a crash and leave fingerprints of negligence.
These violations include:
- E-log and electronic on-board computer violations
- Hours of service violations
- Inaccurate or falsified paperwork
- Failure to maintain and inspect vehicles
Injured in a truck accident? An attorney can help you build a strong claim.
If you or a loved one was involved in a truck accident, the information found in the fleet’s CSA scores may provide a basis for your claim. While these scores are not available for public access, your attorney may issue a subpoena to obtain them from the FMCSA.
The records found in a CSA score may document that a truck driver or fleet owner had a history of violating safety regulations. For example, if a trucking company was scrutinized for failing to maintain its vehicle, or was under investigation by the FMCSA, that evidence may be used to support your claim.
Additionally, the trucking company may have had a history of hiring inexperienced and unqualified drivers and/or falsifying records.
Dealing with a truck accident claim can be an overwhelming and complex process with multiple parties and insurers involved. That’s why it’s critical that you consult with an experienced El Paso truck accident attorney with a proven track record of helping injured motorists obtain compensation.
Contact Michael J. Gopin, PLLC today for a free case evaluation.