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PCF Transportation Unwraps MVR Monitoring for Truck Drivers and Motor Carriers

PCF Transportation Practice Leader, Todd Lykke discusses what MVR monitoring is and how it can make a big difference in the trucking industry.

PCF Transportation Practice Leader, Todd Lykke is joined by special guests, Tiana Schowe, chief operating officer for meshVI, and Rob Moseley, an attorney who specializes in the transportation industry. Together, they discuss what MVR monitoring is and how it can play a major role in mitigating risk and cost for truck drivers and motor carriers. Learn how PCF Transportation uses MVR monitoring to help keep your business moving.

View the discussion below, or read the full transcript for all the details you need to know about MVR monitoring. For more information on how PCF Transportation can help keep your business moving, visit transportation.pcfins.com

 

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Today, I am speaking with PCF Transportation and some special guests regarding motor vehicle record, or MVR monitoring. We'll discuss why it's important and how PCF Transportation utilizes this useful tool to help manage some of the risks that come with the transportation industry.

Allow me to first introduce Todd Lykke, PCF Transportation Practice Leader. Hi, Todd.

Todd Lykke

Hello.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Next is Tiana Schowe, chief operating officer for meshVI.

And Rob Mosley, an attorney specializing in the transportation industry. Good morning.

Rob Moseley

Hey, good morning.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Thank you so much for joining us. We are just really excited to get started. So, for Tiana first, what is driver and MVR monitoring and how does it work in meshVI?

Tiana Schowe

That's a great question, Brodie. So, MVR monitoring is the continual monitoring of motor vehicle violations that occur with drivers as they are out operating their commercial motor vehicles. In the case of meshVI, and how we integrate it into the platform, is we have a seamless driver list that makes it very easy for motor carriers to bulk upload and bulk monitor their drivers from one shot. They're able to see if a driver has received a conviction in real-time data. So they're able to see that the driver is being monitored in real-time data. It will show the score indicating whether or not that driver has received a violation. So, it's kind of like golf, the bad score is not good, the high score is not good. So, the lower the score, the better the driver is as far as the monitoring is concerned. So that's all built into meshVI for one seamless screen and it allows motor carriers, trucking companies and anybody who is monitoring drivers to know in real time if their drivers have received convictions as a result of violating a local law. You know those laws: speeding, reckless driving, running stop signs, et cetera, those types of violations that motor carriers monitor for their drivers.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Ok. So, we're always aiming for that low score sector just like in golf. That's really easy to remember.

Now for Todd, motor carriers are monitoring a lot when it comes to their business, right? They've got the DOT scores, vehicle maintenance, managing logistics, customer service and more; it doesn't end and there's just so much going on. So, from a priority perspective, how important is this?

Todd Lykke

Thanks, Brodie. It is important. It's just part of the ingredients that bake the cake is one way to look at it. When I'm advising a client from a risk management standpoint, what we're always trying to do is to mitigate exposures. How do we shrink the exposure, which in turn helps lower their costs of insurance, right? When an insurance company goes to price something, they have to price for the exposure just like your vehicle maintenance, just like your DOT Scores. The better the score, there's less exposure from the insurance company's perspective. So, when you're monitoring, when a customer is monitoring the MVRs, we know that if something shows up, as in the driver's license has been suspended or there's been a major violation, these are very important things when it went from the view of the insurance carrier. And as we all know, Brodie, many times the drivers, they're not the ones to raise their hand and say, “hey, Mr. Employer, guess what? I just received a 15-mile-an-hour over speed, a speeding ticket. But all of that's going to matter. So, it's just part of that. When you want to have control of your company, you want to control your costs. This is what you want to look at.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Absolutely. And to add to that Todd, what value would a motor carrier get from driver MVR monitoring?

Todd Lykke

It's just understanding your driver pool better. Really, you're mitigating your exposures if you have a bad driver out there, instead of knowing this after the fact. Brodie, here's the situation. What ends up happening when we have a bad accident and after the fact, the MVRs are ultimately run by a plaintiff attorney, and we see that that driver had a suspended license? It may have been because they did not pay child support. It could have been a number of reasons, but from a litigation standpoint, you're just handing over the farm. This is horrible. Now, we have an unqualified driver on the road. Why do we not know that? The reason is most of the time a trucking company will run the MVRs one time a year and after that, they assume everything is fine. They don't know any different, but they should know if there's a problem out there. That could be a showstopper for their company or really put their company in danger from a litigation standpoint or just the cost of insurance. They need to know that they need to make decisions accordingly and this is the value that having this type of service brings to our customers.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Yeah, it really does. I mean, it becomes super clear when you give that specific example. So, thank you. So, I'm going to pass this one over to Rob. From a legal perspective, which I know Todd has touched on a little bit, what are some of the risks and benefits of MVR monitoring?

Rob Moseley

The only risk is if you don't act on the knowledge that you have. I mean, that would be the only risk is if you know a driver is unqualified and yet you keep him on the road, then that would be a risk. But there's no risk to take an unqualified driver off of the road. On the benefit side, the benefits are, you know, Todd and Tiana mentioned some of these. But, you know, you run your annual review under 391-25 of the regulations and it could be 11.5 months before you look at this driver again. And when you do that, you're, you know, that's 11.5 months that driver could have a suspended license or have some sort of violation that would implement some sort of remedial training or some sort of discipline. And yet you didn't know about it. That’s a benefit, is that you're no longer in the dark.

What we hear from time to time is, “well, I'm looking at CSA so I'll find out if they've had a violation,” and the answer is no, you won’t, because CSA is not going to tell you that the driver's been suspended unless the driver gets pulled over and it's brought to your attention that the driver was suspended 11.5 months ago. And also, there are a lot of local laws and rules that don't show up on CSA that would show up with the MVR. There are tons of benefits and very, very little risk in implementing a program like this. That's incredibly helpful.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

It really is and just how you've described it. So, let's get it from the perspective now, from the motor vehicle carrier, what are some of the ways that motor carriers can use MVR monitoring?

Rob Moseley

Well, a, a motor carrier, like Todd says, the motor carrier is going to understand more about the drivers that are in their fleet. But by having this continuous monitoring, and in a litigation context, it's always better to say, “sure, we knew that and this is what we did to respond to that.”

So when, when a driver does have a violation or has some sort of suspension or what have you, you know, you're showing that you're on top of it by knowing it, by responding to it, and reacting to it. But I love the story that you get to tell when you get to say we went above and beyond what the regulations require. And so, when you get to say, hey, the federal regulations only require this static check once a year. And we actually have a continuous monitoring process where we're going to have a continuous look at the driver's record in real time, that's critical. And being able to say you went above and beyond the regulations is something that, again, that's a story we love to tell.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Well, it all sounds wonderful, but of course, it always comes down to the bottom line as it often will in business. So, for Tiana, what does the MVR monitoring typically cost?

Tiana Schowe

And that's a great question. And I will tell you what it costs, but I think the bigger question is, what does it cost not to do the MVR monitoring? And Rob can answer that. The real cost is, it's about $2 a month per driver. So, you're talking $24 a year to monitor your driver's MVRs.

The bigger question and I punt this over to Rob is: Rob, what does it cost not to do the MVR monitoring?

Rob Moseley

Absolutely. There's no comparison as to what it would cost you to find out in a litigation context that you had a driver that was unqualified and you could have learned that, but you didn't. It also, like Todd was talking about, when you're going to the underwriters and you're trying to make a presentation for why the underwriters should be interested in you. This is another story you get to tell just to show the underwriters. Hey, you know, you just ran all of our drivers’ MVRs and you found nothing that we didn't already know.

On the other hand, Todd’s going to the underwriters and he's saying, you know, here's a risk, I'd like you to bind, and they run a list of 25 drivers. On their end they run the MVRs and they say, well, you know, two of these guys that you've got listed here are currently under suspension. Not exactly putting your best foot forward with the underwriters there. So, yeah, that's another advantage you have is not, like going back to what Todd said, you know your drivers, you understand your fleet and you're showing the underwriters or the plaintiff's lawyer, hey, we understand our fleet and, and we've got this under control for sure.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

I'm going to pass that over to Todd to wrap it up here and let us know how PCF Transportation is using this tool to help clients.

Todd Lykke

Well, we're offering it to our clients and that's the big advantage for using PCF. So many clients never hear about this from other agencies when we bring this up. You're like, I had no idea this was even possible. So that's a huge value. So, not only are we going to help from the litigation standpoint, we're going to help from the cost perspective as well. And all of this goes back, as I said before, mitigating those exposures, controlling long-term and short-term costs for our clients.

Moderator: Brodie Lawson

Absolutely. Thank you so much for your wisdom and for giving us just a little bit of insight on MVR and all of its benefits. This was really fascinating and I know that it's going to be beneficial for all of those listening.

Thank you for joining PCF Transportation to discuss the importance of MVR monitoring for motor carriers and drivers.

To learn more about how PCF Transportation can help keep your business moving. Visit transportation.pcfins.com. Thank you so much for watching.

Learn more about PCF Transportation at transportation.pcfins.com.

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