The inspection selection system for the compliance, safety, and accountability algorithm (ISS-CSA or just ISS score) is a classification system used by the FMCSA to rank carriers and generate inspection recommendations to assist roadside inspectors in identifying carriers for inspection.
They use 7 categories called Behavioral Analysis and Safety Improvement Categories (BASICs) to determine the score of each carrier. And assign the carriers with enough data a percentile score (value from 1-100).
These scores are broken into 3 main groups:
- Inspect: A score between 75 and 100
- Optional Inspect: A score between 50 and 74
- Pass: A score of 49 or less
The 7 categories they use to determine the score in order of importance are:
- Hours of Service (HOS): operation of CMV by drivers who are ill, fatigued, or in non-compliance with HOS regulations (log hours). Having this alone prioritized for intervention (85 or greater ISS score) will result in being placed in the inspect category.
- Unsafe Driving: Operating a CMV recklessly or carelessly (related to traffic tickets).
- Driver Fitness: Operating CMV while being unfit due to lack of training, experience, or medical qualifications.
- Controlled Substances and Alcohol: Operating a CMV while being impaired due to alcohol, illegal drugs, or misuse of prescription.
- Vehicle Maintenance: Failure to properly maintain CMV. (e.g. brakes, lights, fifth-wheel platform maintenance, etc)
- Hazardous Materials (HM) Compliance: Unsafe handling of HM on a CMV.
- Crash Indicator: Histories or patterns of high crash involvement, including frequency and severity based on state-reported crashes.
Each category is assigned a score, and based on scores across all categories, a final ISS score is assigned to each carrier. Suppose you need more data to be assigned a score. In that case, you are automatically put in the optional to inspect (except for a random draw of rough 1% of carriers who are put into the inspect category).
Having a high ISS score will not only get you inspected more which will take time away that you could be driving, but insurance companies also use these indicators as part of their pricing of your insurance. So not following compliance can negatively impact your business in more ways than one.