SambaSafety/Vigillo is developing a new CSA Scorecard that the company will make available to its customers ahead of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's eventual rollout of a revised Safety Measurement System for its Carrier Safety Accountability enforcement regime.
"When CSA was first being tested in 2008, Vigillo was the industry leader in analyzing what fueled the scores and made the first CSA Scorecards available, nearly two years before the FMCSA program went live in December 2010," said Steve Bryan, executive vice president and GM of SambaSafety Transportation, during an Oct. 3 call with reporters. "Today, SambaSafety is leveraging Vigillo's expertise to help customers understand the new CSA scoring model long before it will be released.”
Bryan said that SambaSafety/Vigillo is finding that FMCSA’s use of Item Response Theory-based data analysis— as suggested to the agency by the National Academy of Sciences’ CSA review— is “moving in the right direction. Our analysis shows that the IRT model is an effective means of identifying a poor safety culture at a motor carrier” and will significantly improve the effectiveness of the CSA program.
More specifically, he said CSA scoring informed by IRT methodology would result “not in trying to predict future crash [risk], but would instead evaluate the existing ‘safety culture’ at a given fleet.”
He advised that “IRT is very complex and data-intensive, and almost completely changes the building blocks of CSA.” He said that once FMCSA enacts all the planned changes to CSA resulting from the NAS review, there will no longer be violation weights, CSA points, BASIC measures, or Safety Event Groups.
Instead, FMCSA will introduce a new, single CSA BASIC score that will be “a very different way of representing the safety culture of a motor carrier. By helping our customers manage that process in advance of the full [FMCSA] release, we are enabling them to look at the same data they will be seeing with the new scoring model."
Bryan said the company will be introducing its new model CSA scorecard to customers around Nov. 1. He told HDT that what SambaSafety customers will get is a combination educational and management tool they can start using right away to become familiar with the changes FMCSA will be implementing eventually.
Back in July, FMCSA said it would be develop and run a small scale IRT model by September of this year and, after evaluating the results, it would run a full scale IRT model by April 2019.
The NAS study and subsequent report was commissioned by FMCSA to comply with a provision of the FAST Act highway bill of 2015 that mandated a study be conducted of the agency’s CSA program and its Safety Measurement System component.
The hope of all this activity by the government is that an IRT-based analytical method will help develop “an estimate of the measure of ‘safety culture’ for each carrier and be used to monitor and identify carriers in need of intervention,” rather than just zero in on violations, said FMCSA Director of Compliance and Enforcement Joe DeLorenzo on Oct. 22, 2017, during an educational session at the American Trucking Associations’ annual Management Conference & Exhibition In Orlando, Florida.