Ask the Truck Insurance Expertsclick here
With the implementation of CSA, Freight Brokers are held to a higher standard to vet carriers before tendering them a load.
You should keep a current file for every motor carrier that you deal with. “Current” means that you keep the data current with the most recently published FMCSA information and make sure to update the file at least annually. Keep in mind that SMS scores are updated on a monthly basis and it would be best to verify a current SMS score prior to tendering each load.
The above is just a minimum suggestion and other Best practices would include doing a Credit Check and always making sure that the motor carrier’s name appears on the Bill of Lading (BOL) and not yours. Without the motor carrier listed on the BOL as the hauling carrier the motor carrier’s insurance company could deny coverage. Another Best practice is to call the motor carrier at their phone number listed online with the FMCSA and verify that the person setting up the load is legit and a representative of that motor carrier and that he/she did infact accept the tendered load prior to tendering the load. Brokers and shippers getting scammed by truckers posing as motor carriers has become a huge problem. There are some great motor carrier monitoring systems out there that can save your people time and oversight issues including Transcore’s Carrier Watch.
Be sure to develop motor carrier procedure guidelines and that your people involved follow it to a tee – every time. This is so important should you have to submit a claim to the motor carrier’s insurance company or your own.