Top 7 Driver CSA Violations and How to Improve Those Scores
Top CSA Violations
CSA Violations come in at number six on the list of top 10 concerns for the trucking industry according to the American Transportation Research Institute. For motor carriers, this issue comes in as fourth in priority, while drivers rank it as number 10.
This gap shows a need to help drivers understand the importance of maintaining CSA scores. This is further evidenced by the 918,372 violations during driver inspections in 2021.
So, what are the top violations seen during these inspections? There are seven that stand out as easily remedied with the right training for drivers.
CSA Scores: Understanding Violations
The FMCSA CSA BASICS assigns scores based on violations in seven different areas.
- Unsafe Driving
- Controlled Substances
- Hours of Service
- Vehicle Maintenance
- Hazardous Materials
- Driver Fitness
- Crash Indicator
The points received for CSA violations is based on the severity assigned to those BASICS areas. Maintaining CSA scores for your company starts with hiring safe drivers and requires developing a strong safety culture.
It’s easy to grow slack if you don’t keep safety top of mind for your company and your drivers. The top violations seen by the FMCSA are a good indication of this.
#1 Speeding Violations
Speeding is the top CSA violation for the year. This area is scored on three different levels, but combined, this violation was seen 12.81% of the time. This is one of the areas under the unsafe driving BASIC.
It’s important for drivers to understand the importance of following speed limits on the road. This isn’t just to avoid CSA violations, but to help them understand the safety concerns involved with speeding. Proper, ongoing training on the importance of maintaining speed will help drivers keep these concerns in mind.
If you have drivers who continue to have problems in this area, consider including corrective action training as part of your process. With online training, you can easily assign required materials and make completion a requirement to stay in good standing.
#2 Failure to Obey Traffic Laws
The second most common violation, coming in at 10.45% is failure to obey traffic laws. While speeding falls into this category, it is not included with these numbers. Instead, this deals with issues such as improper lane changes or following too close.
This is another area where safety training is a helpful tool to reduce violations. One of the best reasons to use online training is the ease of assigning orientation, ongoing, and corrective action training to deal with important safety issues.
Maintaining a regular training schedule will ensure drivers do not forget important traffic laws that can cause roadside violations.
#3 Failure to Use a Seatbelt
5.43% of CSA violations were due to failure to use a seatbelt. This issue has become a growing problem within the trucking industry, and one that should be addressed for the safety of drivers. While you want to avoid accidents, if one does occur, drivers are less likely to have serious injuries if they have a seatbelt on.
Once again, training is a good place to start to make drivers understand the importance of always wearing their seatbelts. You can also provide an incentive program to promote the use of seatbelts. Incentive programs as part of your safety program is a great way to enhance safety all around.
#4 Operating without a CDL
To maintain CSA scores, you’re required to keep up with all necessary documentation, including driver CDLs. Allowing a driver to operate a vehicle with an outdated or no CDL will cause CSA violations and can lead to your company getting shut down.
You want to make sure you have complete and accurate records on all drivers and keep up with license expiration dates. Using a training management system like Infinit-I Workforce Solutions allows you to easily keep track of these necessary documents and dates to make sure you stay in compliance.
#5 Driving without a Medical Certificate
Medical certificates are another essential piece of documentation to make sure you have on hand. 3.82% of all CSA violations were due to a driver being without a medical certificate in their possession. This is documentation required during roadside inspections and important to keep available at any time.
Online management systems make it simple to keep up with required dates and keep certificates on file for when it’s needed. This will remove the chance of losing the certificate and make it available to your drivers and safety department without searching.
#6 Hours of Service Violations
The FMCSA has specific requirements for hours drivers can remain on duty. Drivers can only drive 11 consecutive hours after a 10 hour off-duty period. During that time, they must take a 30-minute break after 8 hours, and drivers can only do 60 hours on duty in a 7-day period.
With the use of ELDs, which are required, it’s easy for drivers to keep up with these hours to ensure they stay within compliance. Drivers should also learn the importance of planning routes to give themselves time to locate a safe place to park during break times.
#7 Using a Cellphone While Driving
Most people have become dependent on cellphones. While they can be useful tools, they aren’t supposed to be used while driving. Still, 1.96% of all CSA violations are based on cellphone use while driving.
This is another place where both training and incentive programs helps reduce the violations. Make sure all drivers are aware of the regulations around cellphone use and keep this information top of mind for them.
Creating a Positive Safety Culture to Reduce Violations
To really reduce CSA violations, you need a positive safety culture in your company. The best place to start with this is implementing a training program that’s easy for drivers to participate in.
Infinit-I Workforce Solution’s online training management system helps make safety training easily accessible to your drivers so you can provide regular, ongoing training on these critical issues in order to improve CSA scores.
Infinit-I also allows you to keep up with important documentation such as CDLs and medical records. The automatic certification on training helps you defend your safety record easily, and the online method means drivers can access their training from anywhere.
To see how easy the Infinit-I Workforce platform is to use, request a free demo today. Get your CSA scores under control and help your drivers remain safe on the roads.