The Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration on Monday launched a promised review of crash weighting in its Compliance, Safety, Accountability initiative.
The issue of counting no-fault accidents and “crash weighting” are key points in the debate over the FMCSA’s controversial CSA initiative both in and out of court.
Currently, all crashes, whether a motor carrier is at fault or not, count against the carrier in scores derived from data in the CSA safety measurement system.
The agency will “analyze a process” for updating the state-reported crash records it receives to include a determination of a motor carrier’s role in a crash.
“Analysis shows that the current process of including all crashes a motor carrier is involved in is a good predictor of future crash risk,” the agency said.
Truckers beg to differ, however, questioning the connection between a crash in which they are not at fault and the potential for future accidents.
For example, a crash in which a truck stopped at a traffic light is rear-ended by another vehicle, or a parked truck in a lot is struck by another vehicle.
“The agency recognizes that additional crash data might further sharpen the ability of the SMS to identify carriers that pose the highest risk,” the FMCSA said.
The agency expects to release the results of the study in the summer of 2013. An executive summary of the FMCSA research plan is available here.