DAILY NEWS Nov 14, 2012 9:20 AM - 0 comments

CSA a fundamental game changer for US trucking: TCA's Heller tells Driving for Profit

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MISSISSAUGA, Ont. -- It hasn’t changed a single US law, yet the Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program is proving to be a “fundamental game changer” for truck transportation, according to Dave Heller and Chris Burruss from the Truckload Carriers Association.

“It is putting documenting safety to the forefront. Putting safety to the forefront is a good thing to do. But it needs to be done right,” Heller told a large crowd of trucking industry professionals gathered for a Driving for Profit seminar.

In a spirited morning address yesterday, Heller pointed to several current flaws within CSA, including inequities in the way the 50 different US states handle data and enforce the legislation.

Heller’s remarks echoed industry concerns in recent months that while CSA is a step in the right direction towards reducing commercial vehicle crashes, injuries and fatalities, it requires further work.

For example, Scott Mugno, vice-president of safety for FedEx Ground Package System, recently told the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit that data weakness in the program is preventing the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) from having enough information to properly evaluate carriers, as well as methodology issues that count all crashes – regardless of preventability – against a carrier, as among the most significant issues with CSA.

To its credit, the FMCSA did announce changes to the program in late August this year. You can read about them here: http://tinyurl.com/b7nn3es

Burruss, president of TCA, told the Driving for Profit seminar he is a fan of CSA.

“It has its problems and it needs to be tweaked but it is better than what we had before,” Burruss said.

Driving for Profit is a series of half-day seminars, organized by NAL Insurance and sponsored by Dalton Timmis Insurance, Daimler Truck Financial and Truck News.

Yesterday’s event also included a live interview with Prime Inc. founder and owner Robert Low conducted by Transportation Media editorial director Lou Smyrlis.

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