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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation H-16-011
Details
Synopsis: On June 25, 2015, about 7:10 p.m., a 2007 Peterbilt truck-tractor in combination with a 2005 Great Dane semitrailer, operated by Cool Runnings Express, Inc., was traveling northbound in the center lane of Interstate 75, near Chattanooga, Tennessee, when the driver did not respond to the slow-moving traffic ahead and collided with the rear of a 2010 Toyota Prius. Traffic had slowed near milepost 11.7 because of road construction and a work zone lane closure at milepost 12. The truck-tractor continued forward and collided with seven additional vehicles, forcing them into subsequent collisions. Of the 18 vehicle occupants, six died and four were injured. A postcrash fire consumed one vehicle. The truck driver’s trip began earlier that day, about 5:16 a.m., in Haines City, Florida. His destination was the carrier terminal in London, Kentucky.
Recommendation: TO THE FEDERAL MOTOR CARRIER SAFETY ADMINISTRATION: Collect and publish best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries within the trucking industry.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Unacceptable Action
Mode: Highway
Location: Chattanooga, TN, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: HWY15MH009
Accident Reports: ​Preliminary Report, Highway Accident Report HWY15MH009Multivehicle Work Zone Crash on Interstate 75
Report #: HAR-16-01
Accident Date: 6/25/2015
Issue Date: 11/2/2016
Date Closed: 6/3/2019
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: FMCSA (Closed - Unacceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: FMCSA
Date: 6/3/2019
Response: We were encouraged by your initial efforts to collect and evaluate pre-employment screening best practices; however, we are now disappointed that you decided not to complete and publish this information, as recommended. Our intent in issuing this recommendation was not to endorse any particular company’s practices, but to make general guidance available to all companies offering prescreening services. Because you intend to take no further action to implement the recommended guidance, Safety Recommendation H-16-11 is classified CLOSED--UNACCEPTABLE ACTION.

From: NTSB
To: FMCSA
Date: 5/6/2019
Response: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has reviewed the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM), “Qualification of Drivers, Employment Application,” published at 84 Federal Register 46, March 8, 2019. The FMCSA is requesting public comment on the value of, and need for, the requirement to have prospective drivers complete an employment application. The agency is also seeking comment on ways this requirement could be changed to reduce the associated paperwork burdens for drivers and motor carriers, including—but not limited to—the complete elimination of the requirement. For the reasons given below, the NTSB encourages the FMCSA to retain the requirement for an application for employment, including the 10 years of employment history. The NTSB has long supported complete and proper background investigations as one of the essential building blocks of a strong safety culture by motor carriers. The application and processes required by 49 CFR 391.21 are a critical step in determining the safety performance and background of applicants. A multivehicle crash in Chattanooga, Tennessee, is the most recent NTSB investigation addressing the safe hiring of commercial drivers.6 In this 2015 investigation, the NTSB highlighted the inadequacy of driver license records and background checks. The commonwealth of Kentucky—the home base for the motor carrier—is one of only two US jurisdictions that do not provide crash data in their 3-year driver license records. Consequently, the carrier did not have crash data for the truck driver, limiting its ability to assess his safety performance and potential risk prior to a hiring action. As a result of this investigation, the NTSB issued Safety Recommendations H-16-9, -10, and -11 to the FMCSA, as specified below: requirements described in 49 CFR 391.25(b)(2); that is, to specify that the motor carrier must (1) consider the driver’s crash record; (2) consider any evidence that the driver has violated laws governing the operation of motor vehicles; and (3) give great weight to violations—such as speeding, reckless driving, and operating while under the influence of alcohol or drugs—that indicate the driver has exhibited a disregard for public safety. (H-16-9) Evaluate motor carrier use of, and perspectives on, your Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP), and identify and address barriers affecting the use of the PSP, examining issues such as the value, accuracy, and timeliness of the information, and the cost of, and incentives for, using the program. (H-16-10) Collect and publish best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries within the trucking industry. (H-16-11) Safety Recommendation H-16-9 is classified “Closed—Unacceptable Action,” because the FMCSA indicated that it had reconsidered its earlier intention (in 2017) to add this action to the rulemaking agenda due to its determination of the infeasibility of enforcement and limited safety benefit. Safety Recommendations H-16-10 and -11 are classified “Open—Acceptable Response.” Collectively, these NTSB recommendations emphasize the criticality of reviewing and verifying driver applicant 10-year employment history and driving records to identify individual risk factors during the hiring process.

From: FMCSA
To: NTSB
Date: 1/18/2019
Response: -From Michael Jordan, Strategic Planning and Program Evaluation Division, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration: On August 8, 2018, and December 4, 2018, representatives from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) met to discuss the status of 13 safety recommendations. This memorandum communicates the status updates discussed at those meetings. Source: Highway Accident Report (NTSB/HAR-16/01); Chattanooga, Tennessee (2015-06-25) Current Classification: Open - Acceptable Response Requested Classification: Closed Status Update: • FMCSA reviewed the web sites of several industry leading providers of background screening services. This review was done as part of the limited scope program evaluation of the PSP program (referenced in the response to NTSB safety recommendation H-16-010) to determine whether there are standards or best practices for pre-employment investigations. • FMCSA found that there were similarities in the providers’ approaches, which are presented in the following table: Hiring Practice: HireRight DAC White Paper/ Details: Four stages of successful driver screening Tailored Approach: Yes Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Yes Core Screening: Yes DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Yes Advocates PSP: Yes Ongoing Support: Yes Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Unclear Hiring Practice: Foley Incorporated White Paper/ Details: The Motor Carrier’s Guide to Hiring Drivers Tailored Approach: Yes Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Yes Core Screening: Yes DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Unclear Advocates PSP: Unclear Ongoing Support: Yes Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Yes Hiring Practice: New Era Drug Testing Background Screening White Paper/ Details: Four important background screening practices for the trucking industry Tailored Approach: Unclear Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Yes Core Screening: Yes DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Unclear Advocates PSP: Unclear Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Unclear Hiring Practice: LexisNexis Approach White Paper/ Details: Best Practices for Employment Screening Tailored Approach: Yes Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Yes Core Screening: Yes DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Yes Advocates PSP: Unclear Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Unclear Hiring Practice: HireSafe White Paper/ Details: Truck driver background checks for the trucking industry Tailored Approach: Yes Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Unclear Core Screening: Yes DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Yes Advocates PSP: Yes Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Yes Hiring Practice: Verisk Analytics White Paper/ Details: Unclear Tailored Approach: Yes Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Unclear Core Screening: Unclear DOT Compliance: Yes Beyond Compliance: Yes Advocates PSP: Yes Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Yes Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Yes Hiring Practice: Aon Risk Solutions White Paper/ Details: Unclear Tailored Approach: Unclear Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Unclear Core Screening: Unclear DOT Compliance: Unclear Beyond Compliance: Unclear Advocates PSP: Yes Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Unclear Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Yes Hiring Practice: Vigillo White Paper/ Details: Unclear Tailored Approach: Unclear Pre-Screen (Clear Qualifications): Unclear Core Screening: Unclear DOT Compliance: Unclear Beyond Compliance: Unclear Advocates PSP: Yes Ongoing Support: Unclear Criminal Check: Unclear Analytical Prioritizing Tool: Yes • On February 2, 2017, FMCSA initially responded to NTSB that the Agency would collect and publish best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries; however, the Agency is not permitted to endorse a particular company or best practice. Therefore, FMCSA has no plans to publish best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries. • FMCSA requests NTSB close safety recommendation H-16-011.

From: NTSB
To: FMCSA
Date: 4/20/2017
Response: We note that you have informally queried several motor carriers to determine how they use and view the PSP, and that your anecdotal results were favorable. We are encouraged to learn of your plans to more formally evaluate the PSP and collect industry best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries. Pending your implementation of the recommended evaluation findings and your publication of the industry guidance, Safety Recommendations H-16-10 and -11 are classified OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE.

From: FMCSA
To: NTSB
Date: 2/2/2017
Response: -From Daphne Y. Jefferson, Deputy Administrator: FMCSA established the Pre-Employment Screening Program (PSP) in May 2010 to comply with Federal legislation-requiring the Agency to provide information about driver safety performance to persons conducting pre-employment screening for the motor carrier industry. Motor carriers can use the information provided through the PSP, which is comprised of 5 years of crash data and 3 years of inspection data about a driver, to assist in determining if the driver applicant should be hired. Since FMCSA launched PSP, the number of PSP users has steadily increased monthly. Through October 2016, FMCSA enrolled over 15,000 companies (including both motor carriers and industry service providers) that account for nearly 60,000 PSP users. Employers have evaluated PSP data 4.8 million times during the hiring process. In 2013, FMCSA published the results of a study describing PSP's impact on safety and commerce. The results showed that companies regularly using PSP have, on average, reduced their crash rates by 8 percent and avoided 863 crashes. The study also showed those companies reduced their driver out-of-service rates by 17 percent, preventing almost 3,600 drivers from being placed out-of-service at the roadside. Additionally, FMCSA informally queried a number of motor carriers that use PSP to determine how they viewed the system. All responded favorably when asked about the system, and reported using it to make hiring decisions. Carriers used the PSP report to ensure that drivers accurately reported information on their applications and did not omit places of employment or crashes. Motor carriers also responded that they used PSP to determine if drivers had worked for companies with poor safety ratings in the past. Input from motor carriers generally indicated that using PSP helped them hire the best drivers available and improve their overall safety performance. These same motor carriers also noted that drivers with good safety records were in much higher demand and that they potentially could command better compensation and benefits. FMCSA is planning to conduct a program evaluation of PSP in 2017. This study will evaluate motor carrier use of and perspectives on the program while identifying and addressing barriers affecting the use of the program. It will examine issues such as the value, accuracy and timeliness of the information used in the program, as well as the cost of and incentives for using the program. The study will also collect and publish best practices for pre-employment investigations and inquiries within the trucking industry. FMCSA requests the NTSB classify safety recommendations H-16-010 and H-16-011 as "Open-Acceptable Response."