Module 6: Monitoring and Intervention Previous Module Overview Glossary Help

Introduction

In this module, you’ll learn about Alberta Transportation’s monitoring and intervention process.

Timeframe: 30 mins

In this section you will:
  • Learn about carrier monitoring and intervention in Alberta.
  • Learn about what to expect during an audit.
  • Learn how to develop an action plan for correcting deficiencies.


For technical assistance please reference the Help and Troubleshooting Guide.

How do I maintain good safety practices?

The good news is, if you’ve been applying the lessons in this course so far to your own work as a carrier, then you’ve already done a lot to make sure your safety and maintenance programs are in place. But when a carrier’s safety performance continues to decline, the government may intervene to reduce their level of risk.

You shouldn’t wait for a poor safety record to attract the attention of Alberta Transportation or other enforcement agencies before you make improvements.

You can do your own compliance review right now by reviewing your carrier profile report and addressing any issues that show up.

If you notice your drivers are getting lots of convictions or your vehicles have lots of defects, you may need to improve your safety and maintenance programs.

Conduct Your Own Compliance Review

  • Take the last 6 months of your records logs with supporting documents such as motor vehicle inspections (CVIP, CVSA), fuel statements, your Carrier Profile report and any other required information.
    • Check your profile for incidents and violations, then look at the drivers’ logs for the dates these happened.
    • Check that the logs have supporting documents to verify the record for that day.
  • Check your driver records.
    • Make sure they are up-to-date and that you offer your drivers required training as soon as they need it.
  • Are any of your drivers are not complying with the law or with your company safety program? Make sure you enforce your discipline policy.
  • If there are a lot of “Requires Attention” or “Out of Service” inspection results on your Carrier Profile, check your vehicle files.
    • Make sure your maintenance schedule is being followed, and that you are maintaining your vehicles properly.
    • Make sure your drivers are all trained to do trip inspections properly.
  • If you notice hours of service violations in your Carrier Profile, consider retraining your drivers on HOS rules.
    • Make sure they know they are obligated by law to comply.
    • Help them to understand the rules for every aspect of hours of service that affect them (special rules, sleeping berths and so on).
►As part of your internal review, consider using Alberta Transportation’s Compliance Quiz. The quiz is available online at www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/tr-commercial-trucks-tractors-trailers-quiz.pdf Completing the questions in the quiz accurately may help you identify areas that need improvement.

Carrier Monitoring

Transportation safety requirements are in place to reduce traffic-related deaths and serious injuries involving commercial vehicles on Alberta highways. If a carrier does not comply with safety laws, the government may intervene with their operations to reduce the risk the carrier poses to the public.

Alberta Transportation monitors Alberta’s carriers by using their history of convictions, Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) inspections and collisions. This information is gathered from on-road enforcement agencies from across North America and includes convictions, inspections, and reportable collisions that occurred in Alberta and in other jurisdictions.

This information is used to calculate a risk factor score. If a carrier’s risk factor score gets too high, they will appear on the Carrier Services monitoring report and Alberta Transportation may then intervene.

Alberta Transportation follows guidelines in the Intervention and Discipline Policy to intervene with a carrier.

Audits

Alberta Transportation may audit a carrier for the following reasons:

  • The carrier has reached a stage of monitoring.
  • Alberta Transportation has received a complaint or safety concerns about the carrier.
  • The carrier has been involved in a serious event, such as a collision.
  • The carrier is applying for a special permit.
  • Random selection.

 

The time required to complete an audit is dependent on the carrier’s fleet size, their type of operation and their overall level of compliance. During an audit, Alberta Transportation evaluates a carrier’s level of compliance to transportation safety laws. The auditor will look at a sample of records in four main areas of compliance:

  1. Carrier Safety
    1. Written Safety Program
    2. Management Practices
    3. Insurance policies
    4. Compliance with the law
    5. Dangerous Goods control records
  2. Driver Safety
    1. Driver files (including things such as driver training records and abstracts)
    2. License disclosures
    3. Driver collisions and conviction records
    4. Annual driver evaluations
    5. Evidence of corrective action(s) taken by the Carrier
  3. Drivers’ Hours of Service
    1. Daily logs
    2. Time records (radius records, for example)
    3. Monitoring Procedures
    4. Supporting documents (e.g. fuel bills, toll receipts, accommodation receipts, payroll records)
  4. Supporting documents (i.e. fuel bills, toll receipts, accommodation receipts, payroll records)
    1. Records of Carrier’s routine preventative maintenance program;
    2. Valid CVIP certificates;
    3. Trip Inspection Reports and follow up repairs;
    4. Records of defect repairs;

A score will be given to the carrier for their level of compliance in each area.


After an audit

After Alberta Transportation completes an audit, the carrier is given a copy of the full audit report. This report shows all violations that were found by the auditor.

The auditor will also conduct an exit interview to explain the results to the carrier. During this time, the carrier will have the chance to ask questions and sign off on the audit results.

No matter what score they get on the audit, carriers are expected to correct any violations that were identified by the auditor. Carriers can do this by creating an action plan. Alberta Transportation may also take further intervention action depending on the results of the audit. This includes putting conditions on the carrier’s operations, cancelling a carrier’s permits, issuing administrative penalties or other action.

Investigations

Investigations may be conducted on a carrier for reasons including, but not limited to:

  • Alberta Transportation has received a complaint about the carrier’s operations.
  • There are general safety concerns about a carrier (e.g. overweight or over-dimensional issues, mechanical fitness issues).
  • The carrier has been involved in a serious event, such as a wheel separation or collision.
  • The carrier is applying for a special permit or has violated the conditions on an existing permit.

Investigations are different from an audit. While an audit looks at the overall level of compliance of a carrier, an investigation is usually very specific to a single event or type of violation.

For example: If Alberta Transportation receives a complaint from a driver saying their dispatcher makes them drive over the number of hours allowed by law, an investigator may go review that carrier’s hours of service compliance during that time.

Depending on the findings of an investigator, further action may be taken to ensure the carrier does not pose a risk to the public.

Intervention

Alberta Transportation follows guidelines in the Intervention and Discipline Policy to intervene with a carrier. Intervention is taken based on the safety risk to the public and may involve:

  • Auditing or investigating a carrier for compliance.
  • Issuing one or more administrative penalties to a carrier and/or its drivers.
  • Issuing conditions to a carrier.
  • Canceling a carrier’s permit.
  • Downgrading a carrier’s safety fitness rating.
  • Suspending or canceling a carrier’s Safety Fitness Certificate.

If a carrier is downgraded to an Unsatisfactory rating or if their Safety Fitness Certificate has been suspended, they are not legally allowed to operate commercial vehicles.

Appeals

Carriers have the right to appeal a decision made by Alberta Transportation. For a fee, a carrier may submit an application to the Alberta Transportation Safety Board for:

  • An oral appeal, which requires a personal appearance before the board ($250).
  • A written appeal ($125).

An appeal may not be started after 30 days from the date the carrier received written notice of a decision.

Summary

In this module, you learned you shouldn’t wait for a poor safety record to attract the attention of Alberta Transportation before you make improvements. You can conduct your own compliance review to ensure your safety and maintenance programs are working well. You can also come up with an action plan to correct issues before they become a bigger problem.

If you don’t correct violations, Alberta Transportation may intervene to reduce the risk your company poses to the public. This may include an audit, investigation, penalties, a suspension or other consequences.

NOTE: To complete the training, save your progress and receive a certificate, you are required to have an account and be logged in with 511 Alberta.

Self-Assessment