Have you or your drivers ever been in an accident that was unavoidable? Your driver did everything right and yet it’s still a mark on their record and yours. Crashes can have a large impact on your CSA scores, so when it’s not your fault it can hurt even worse. That’s why the Crash Preventability Determination Program was developed.

Below we outline what a CSA score is, how the Crash Indicator BASIC is scored, and all about the Crash Preventability Determination Program.


What is a CSA score?

Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) is an enforcement program of FMCSA that holds motor carriers and drivers accountable for their role in road safety. Every carrier with a U.S. DOT number that has gone through a roadside inspection has a CSA score. Scores help identify carriers at high-risk for safety issues on the road. Because these scores are public, it’s important to manage CSA scores on a regular basis.


The Crash Indicator BASIC

There are seven categories, called BASICS, that FMCSA looks at to determine your CSA score. View the seven BASICS here. For today’s post we are focusing on the Crash Indicator BASIC. According to FMCSA, this BASIC score takes into consideration patterns of high crash involvement including frequency and severity of crashes from State-reported crash history. While history of crash involvement is not publicly available it does still add to your score and may affect your business. If your accident to incident ratio is too high it could put you at risk for more audits or have legal implications.


The Crash Preventability Determination Program

So, your driver has been in an accident that was unavoidable, and they are still being held as the guilty party? Not anymore. Now, with the Crash Preventability Determination Program carriers can contest to remove those non-preventable crashes from their scores.

In a webinar hosted by EROAD earlier this month safety and compliance expert, P. Sean Garney, Vice President of Scopelitis Transportation Consulting, shared information on the Crash Preventability Determination Program and what it means for fleets.

The Crash Preventability Determination Program, which began on May 1, 2020, allows carriers and drivers to submit evidence of eligible non-preventable crashes that occurred on or after August 1, 2019.

Carriers can submit eligible crashes as Requests for Data Review (RDR) through FMCSA’s DataQs website. Submissions should include the required police accident report and any other supporting documents such as photos, videos, insurance documents and drug and alcohol test results for fatal crashes. If you have in-cab technology or dashcams to support your submissions, the data and/or video-files can be included and may be helpful in the review.

It’s important to note that you should not go through this process if your crash was indeed avoidable because you could get more heavily scrutinized. So be sure that your driver is not at-fault and have evidence to prove this.

Once an RDR is submitted, FMCSA will review the request and determine if the crash is not preventable. If the crash is determined non-preventable, it will still be listed on the carrier’s record in the Safety Management System, but not included when calculating a carrier’s Crash Indicator BASIC. In addition, non-preventable determination will also be noted on a driver’s PSP record.



While the Crash Preventability Determination Program is a welcome improvement to CSA, the best way to keep the roads safe and your CSA scores low is prevention. Now is the time to re-evaluate your safety policies and reinvigorate your driver safety training.


For more details on the new crash preventability program, a list of eligible crashes, and DataQs best practices, watch our in-depth webinar with Scopelitis Transportation Consulting. 

WATCH NOW: Preventing the Preventable – How to use DataQs to Improve CSA Scores

Improve CSA Scores with the Crash Preventability Determination Program

by | Apr 1, 2021 |

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