Back to BASICs: Measuring the Safety of US Vehicles

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The BASIC categories for safety measurement

Carriers are scored on seven separate Behavior Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs).

Unsafe Driving

The Unsafe Driving BASIC is based on driver behaviour, measured on safety events & violations (inspections, violations, crashes).

The carriers’ BASIC score for Unsafe Driving is based on roadside inspection results. In the case of a roadside safety violation (for example, speeding, reckless driving, improper lane change, or inattention), the carrier should be able to provide documentation like driver training certificates and written route plans.

Stream Check can help maintain compliance with the Unsafe Driving BASIC by maintaining records of driver training and, with the Teletrac Navman integration, can help carriers to identify patterns of noncompliance in their drivers to educate them on the regulations and the importance compliance. Additionally, Stream Go makes it easy for carriers to provide clear route plans.

Crash Indicator

The Crash Indicator BASIC is a measurement of histories or patterns of crash involvement, based on information from State-reported crashes. It is less a measure of behaviour and more of the consequence of that behaviour.

Carriers’ safety performance will be assessed based on the crashes they’ve been involved in (the number, frequency and severity) – taking mileage into account. Crash Indicator information is not publicly available: only enforcement personnel and the carrier itself (via its own safety profile) can see Crash Indicator data for a specific carrier.

Drivers need to understand how to safely operate their vehicle in order to avoid crashes, and carriers have a responsibility to ensure drivers have the proper training and certification to reduce the likelihood of crashes.

Stream Check can help maintain compliance with the Crash Indicator BASIC by, again, maintaining records of driver licences and training, and maintaining driver training schedules.

Hours-of-Service Compliance

The Hours-of-Service (or HOS) Compliance BASIC is in place to measure carriers compliance with HOS regulations. HOS regulations are in place to manage driver fatigue – and the dangerous behaviours associated with fatigue.

Carriers must maintain accurate and up-to-date records of duty status (RODS), recording drivers’ hours and ensuring they stay within legal limits. They must be able to provide these records on request by Safety Investigators.

Drivers need to keep their RODS current, accurate, and complete. They should understand how many hours they can legally drive under HOS rules, and be aware of the possible adverse effects of fatigue and lack of sleep.

Stream Check can help maintain compliance with the HOS Compliance BASIC using telematics data in the Teletrac Navman integration – which includes a record of driver hours. Intelligent routing & planning features in Stream Go can also keep time on the road to a minimum.

Vehicle Maintenance

The Vehicle Maintenance BASIC addresses the FMCSR requirement to properly maintain a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) and to prevent shifting loads, spilt or dropped cargo, and overloading of a CMV.

The BASIC is measured on roadside safety violations, like operating an out-of-service vehicle, failure to make required repairs or improper load securement.

The Vehicle Maintenance BASIC is the indicator that allows Stream Check to come into its own – we’ll explore this in more detail below.

Controlled Substances/Alcohol

The Controlled Substances/Alcohol BASIC ranks carriers based on whether drivers have violated regulations around alcohol and drugs in roadside inspections.

Motor carriers are required to implement a controlled substance/alcohol testing program and to educate drivers about how to comply.

Additionally, CMV drivers are subject to a lower legal definition of drunkenness than other drivers. The blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level limit for non-CMV drivers varies between 0.08-0.10 state-to-state, but the federal limit of 0.04% applies to CMV drivers in any state.

You can use Stream Check to both schedule and record results of substance/alcohol testing and of driver training.

Hazardous Materials Compliance

The Hazardous Materials (HM) BASIC only applies to carriers that transport HM on commercial motor vehicles (CMVs).

The BASIC is measured on safety violations like failing to mark, label, or placard in accordance with the regulations, not properly securing a package containing HM, cargo tank specification testing, loading/unloading, attendance, and leakage.

Safety Investigators may require HM-specific documentation, like HM incident reports, HM shipping papers, Hazardous Waste manifests, Cargo Tank Manufacturer’s Certificates, and evidence of HM training.

The flexible nature of Stream Check means that it’s easy to include HM-specific checks and inspections in the daily walkaround checks for specific vehicles and to require HM-specific certification for drivers to be assigned to specific vehicles.

Driver Fitness

The Driver Fitness BASIC refers to driver training, experience, and medical qualifications. This includes the requirement for Drivers to hold a valid and appropriate CDL as well as being medically qualified to operate a CMV.

As part of the CDL, drivers are required to obtain and maintain a valid Medical Examiner’s Certificate (ME Certificate), and to provide their State Driver Licensing Agency SDLA with a copy of their ME Certificate.

Carriers may be required to provide documentation to Safety Inspectors, including driver qualification files, medical certificates, State driving records, annual reviews of driving records, and employment applications.

Using the Stream Check Driver Management functionality, carriers are able to record driver medical certification and to track when they need to be re-examined & re-issued.


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