The Navigator Blog

FMCSA Proposes Safety Measurement Changes and Asks for Feedback

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has just started inviting comments on proposed changes to its important Safety Measurement System (SMS) for commercial trucks and fleets. The SMS currently assesses which motor carriers pose the greatest risk to safety through data collected from roadside inspections, crash reports, and investigations. They then use the data for the purpose of intervention. Some of the proposed changes include reorganizing the SMS’s safety categories (currently known as “BASICs”); organizing roadside violations into violation groups for prioritization purposes; simplifying violation severity weights; adjusting some of the Intervention Thresholds that identify companies for possible intervention;

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How does paying my truck drivers per diem help my company?

Author: Michael Ritzema, President of Superior Trucking Payroll Service What is Per Diem? Per Diem is Latin for “by the day.” In the federal tax world, it represents the expense that an employee would need to work out of location for work. Expenses like food. Every employee working out of location is entitled to up to $66.00, 80% of which can be written off for income tax purposes. Breakdown for the Employer For every day that your driver spends working away from home $66.00 of their earnings for the day can count as per diem and won’t be taxed like

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Do I need Garagekeepers Insurance?

Let’s start with a few questions. Do any of the following activities apply to your operation? Operate a repair shop Provide towing services Store equipment or containers owned by others Allow other truck drivers to park on your premises If so, you should consider Garagekeepers coverage. Trucking companies often have a shop on premises where they repair their own equipment and offer repair services to others. When equipment that is not owned by the trucking company is damaged on the premises, the trucking company may be held legally liable for damage to vehicles and their contents. Garagekeepers coverage provides physical

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The Relationship Between Driver Retention and Crash Rates

Recent research suggests that there is a link between high levels of driver retention and lower crash rates. A study published by the National Surface Transportation Safety Center for Excellence (NSTSCE) entitled Examining the Relationship Between CMV Driver Retention and Safety took a unique approach to this topic. The study analyzes data from more than 12,000 drivers for single large carriers who were evaluated over a 3-year period. Previous research has proven that a relationship exists between retention and safety, but these studies have fallen short of comparing the relationship between drivers who voluntarily change jobs and the impact on safety with

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Do young drivers bring more risk?

One debate that has been tossed around the industry for years is whether young drivers can safely operate trucks and how young drivers impact loss experience. Generally, it has been agreed upon that young drivers bring more risk. While there has been research linking risk and driver age, there hasn’t been much information on the relationship between age and experience.   A recent study conducted by the NSCSTE examined how age and driving experience affect safety and risk for trucking companies. The study compared 9,000 drivers in 6 age groups and 8 driving experience categories. The findings suggest that experience might be the

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Do you need garagekeepers coverage?

If you run a shop, do some towing, or allow other truckers to park on your premises, you may be held legally liable for a loss to a non-owned auto. A garagekeepers policy provides physical damage coverage for trucks, tractors, or trailers that you do not own but are in your possession for service or storage as part of your garage operations. Direct primary garagekeepers coverage will compensate the vehicle owner even if you are not responsible for the loss, such as in the case of weather-related damages. This type of coverage can protect your operation and preserve goodwill in

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