FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) SMS (Safety Measurement System) is an on-line searchable database available to the public.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is arguably the vanguard for the prevention of crashes, injuries and fatalities involving large trucks and buses on America’s roadways. To achieve this mission the agency works to identify unsafe motor carriers and prioritize enforcement resources on those that pose the greatest safety risk. The complex methodology is explained by the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Motor Carrier Administration here.
Recently, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSCA) released a report that confirmed that the agency’s Safety Measurement System (SMS) is facilitating the identification of high risk truck and bus companies. For the layperson, access to commercial vehicle safety records, or commercial motor carrier safety records, there is no monetary barrier to discovery – the data is on-line and free. The report entitled, “Limitations and Uses of Safety Measurement System Data for Assessing Motor Carrier Safety” is available here.
While safety performance data has been available for nearly fifteen (15) years, the SMS has been providing the industry and public with comprehensive and informative updated safety performance data since December 2010. SMS was developed as an enforcement tool to identify correlated crash risk by identifying non-compliance patterns of motor carriers involved in crashes and calculating crash rates for these populations. The report itself notes that non-compliance patterns are linked to with carriers that are more likely to have crashes or a “high crash risk“. Other independent sources are also cited as confirming the effectiveness of SMS and include reports from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute and the American Transportation Research Institute. Additionally, the report notes that following the Agency’s implementation of SMS in December 2010, overall violation rates from roadside inspections have decreased 14% and driver violation rates have decreased by 17%. This is noted as the most dramatic decrease in over a decade.
In a related press release, the FMCSA notes that “the report found that SMS effectively identifies the truck and bus companies involved in 90 percent of the more than 100,000 crashes that occur each year, and those that are identified as high-risk carriers continue to have crash rates that are twice the national average“. The same release confirms that SMIS is tool to prioritize high-risk truck and bus companies for enforcement interventions. The report itself confirms the agency’s effort to remove unsafe carriers and commercial drivers from the nation’s roadways while protecting the traveling public.
The FMCSA Press Release reflects the agency’s interest in further its mission while raising awareness of the importance of safety and development of safety initiatives by motor carriers. The public nature of carrier data, as well as the accountability that follows, is both in demand and deserved. The report indicates that nearly 70 million user sessions occur on the website yearly, thus reflecting a demand for the very information provided by SMS.
Our office is investigating cases involving commercial drivers and motor carriers, in other words truckers and trucks, involved in serious accidents. A portion of our investigative effort revolves around any violations of applicable Federal Motor Carrier Regulations and any reported history that raises questions about the fitness of a company or driver for particular endeavors. Please call (954) 524-2820 with any questions or e-mail [email protected] We offer free case evaluations and contingency fee contracts to assist victims of trucking accidents or accidents involving commercial vehicles and commercial drivers. Truck accident lawyers or Truck accident attorneys must know where and how to evaluate safety data like that discussed above to effectively prosecute a case for victims. Let us know if we can help.