Passenger carriers may find that their customers are a lot more informed about their safety history than they were in the past. At least, the passengers with iPhones might be as FMCSA launches a new App for the iPhone and iPad that makes it easy to check a company’s safety history.
The app — ‘SaferBus’ — allows users unfamiliar with the intricacies of Federal Regulations or the CSA system and its website to easily look up the safety history of passenger bus lines (learn about CSA here). By simply searching by name, DOT number, or MC number the user will find a snapshot of the carrier and the option to search, BASIC by BASIC through the safety history of the carrier. The app also gives the user the opportunity to send a complaint about the carrier to FMCSA.
FMCSA has been on a crusade against passenger carriers with troublesome safety histories for the last couple of years. A series of high-profile crashes in early 2011 put the agency under a lot of pressure from Congress and the Public to improve safety.
It is unknown right now if FMCSA will launch a version of this app for other motor carriers. The most likely candidate would be household goods carriers. FMCSA has been providing safety information about household goods carriers to people moving houses for several years now. In the last year or two, freight brokers have found themselves needing safety history information more and more as a means to fend off potential lawsuits. If there was an app for all carriers it is likely that it would be popular in the shipping industry.
An example of a report is shown here. (Carrier information redacted). You can read FMCSA’s write up on the app here.