Routine Inspections Impact CSA Ratings for “Out of Service”

State rankings for overall inspection intensity are based on two measurements:
• Total truck and driver inspections performed over the first two years of the Compliance Safety Accountability program from December 2010 to December 2012.
• Total lane-miles of National Highway System roadway within each state. The March 13 report from the Commercial Carrier Journal concluded that in Louisiana, for example:
10 inspections/lane-mile




Observed vehicle defects

Lack of periodic inspection


Seat belt

The following was submitted by fellow attorney, Garner Berry, who practices in Mississippi. You may find the analysis worthy of consideration relating to routine inspections, CSA and how the information may be misused by the plaintiff’s bar.
The report analyzes State Inspection Intensity looking at the overall inspections performed on trucking companies in all 50 states for the first two years of CSA implementation (December 2010-December 2012).  The report also analyzes the Top States by Violation Types (i.e. moving violations, hours of service violations, maintenance violations, etc.) and compares the states to the national average. 
For Mississippi, you will notice in the State Inspection Intensity that the top three percentages of violations for all inspections in the state were given for maintenance issues (lights, brakes, vehicle defects).  You will also note in the Top States by Violations, Mississippi ranked fourth in highest violations issued within the state for maintenance violations, and was also in at least the top 15 for violations involving brakes and lights.  You can apply the same rational to Louisiana.


I find this information most compelling when you consider the information contained in the presentation I drafted and recently sent to you (Mississippi Overview of Trucking Claims).  Plaintiff’s attorneys are continually including “out of service” claims against trucking companies following an accident in an attempt to prove that mechanical failure/defects contributed to an accident.  While there are many defenses to these types of claims, it is very helpful for companies and their attorneys to be knowledgeable about the information out there to vigorously defend against these claims. 

I hope that you and your clients find this information useful.  Should you desire to discuss it in more detail, please do not hesitate to contact me.  And should I be able to be of any assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to contact me day or night at the below cell phone number.

M. Garner Berry
Markow Walker, P.A.
599 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 100
Ridgeland, MS 39157
(W) 601-853-1911
(F) 601-853-8284
Good work Garner! Thanks for the insight. If you need assistance in Mississippi, please consider contacting Garner. If you need assistance in  the defense of trucking in Louisiana or Texas, particularly North Louisiana or Northeast Texas, feel free to call me day or night.
Mark Perkins
Perkins & Associates, LLC
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