DOT Safety Regulation Update Fast-Fax™
Week of January 17, 2011
Foley Services Your Single Source for DOT Compliance
In this week’s issue, Fast-Fax will answer the most common questions we’ve received about the new CSA website, including how to log in.
As you may know, in December, FMCSA released (a limited amount of) CSA information to the general public. At the same time that the public information was released and CSA was formally ‘switched on’, FMCSA made a number of key changes to how the information is presented. (They also enacted some other changes to the system, such as, changing the name from CSA2010 to CSA). We’ve had a number of calls and emails from confused carriers trying to find their information.
The first change is that the web address of the CSA portal has changed. To view your information you now need to go to http://ai.fmcsa.dot.gov/sms/. (If you visit the old CSA page, look for a link for ‘SMS Data’ to find the new site).
Another change to the web interface is that, by and large, FMCSA is referring to the CSA data as SMS data. SMS — the Safety Measurement System — is the name of the CSA system that actually measures carrier compliance.
How To Find Your Information
When you arrive at the SMS page you will see, prominently placed at the top right hand side of the screen, a log-in box asking for your DOT Number or your Motor Carrier Number. This is actually the public log in. If you were to use this, you would only receive the limited information available to the public. To get the full CSA information available to motor carriers, you need to do the following:
Step One: Log into FMCSA’s Portal
- Scroll down to where it says “Click Here To Log In With Your USDOT Number and Motor Carrier PIN Number.”
- Where prompted, input your DOT number and then your PIN Number.
Step Two: Return to the CSA Page
- To view your information you will actually need to log in again.
- Go up to the main login, type in either your DOT number or MC number. Your DOT number may automatically appear in the box.
- Click search.
This will open up the SMS data site. At first glance it will look identical to the public site however, on closer inspection, you should see that the Cargo-Related and Crash Indicator BASICs are viewable.
Problems With The Site
One criticism of the new site is that it is very graphics heavy. It may be slow to load on older computers. You should also be sure that your Flash and Java plug-ins are up-to-date. If you are having a problem, look for a message from your browser telling you you need to update (often found in a yellow drop-down bar at the top of the page).
Changes in Terminology
If you checked your information during the data preview this fall you may have seen the terms ‘Deficient’ and ‘Investigative Deficiencies’ being used to describe BASICs with percentiles above the threshold. You may also have seen a logo that looked like a red spray painted X.
Since the public launch, FMCSA has made the terminology and appearance of the CSA information less aggressive. If you are deficient in a BASIC you will now see a box that says ‘ALERT!’ We have had several questions on this matter. Please note that ‘ALERT!’ is the same as ‘Deficient’. Some carriers have been working under the assumption that ‘ALERT!’ was a more mild status message; again, it is not, ‘ALERT!’ is the same as ‘Deficient.’
The logo has also been removed (it just has a text ‘ALERT!’ now) and the colors have been changed from red to orange. This was an effort to allay concerns that outsiders to the industry would be unduly concerned by FMCSA’s previous choice of terminology.