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undefinedThis blog aims to highlight the importance of maintaining a clean PSP record for commercial drivers.

An Introduction to the Pre-employment Screening Program (PSP)

Any conviction of a moving violation in CA is assessed negligent operator treatment system (NOTS) by the DMV. Then, they notify the DOT FMCSA, which is filed in the commercial driver’s PSP.

The FMCSA mandates all recruiting motor carriers to consider the commercial driver’s PSP record before hiring them. Large, high-paying fleets that provide good to excellent benefits might not hire a driver with a moving violation conviction during the previous three years or offer lower pay per mile and fewer benefits. 

Commercial Drivers Who Are Proud of Their Clean PSP Enhance Road Safety 

Surely, this is not to say any commercial driver would neglect safety. However, statistics tend to show a correlation between clean PSP records and reduced rates of road accidents. Maybe it is because conscientious commercial drivers maintain a clean PSP.

A clean PSP record reflects the drivers' adherence to traffic laws and safety protocols. Commercial drivers with a clean record are more likely to consider the safer option when confronted with a missed deadline or speeding to make the deadline. They’re not as apt to answer their phone while driving or push the safety limits.

They realize the FMCSA Safety Measurement System (SMS) is designed to record violations of Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) with severity and time-weight points that can lead to their carrier’s SMS percentile being 75 or above, which can lead to structured interventions from the FMCSA and the Inspection Selection System (ISS).

Drivers who use the DOT number of fleets with an SMS percentile of 75 or above are more often pulled in for inspections at weigh stations across the country. This inconvenience intrudes on the schedule of all commercial drivers using that DOT number. 

A Clean PSP Enhances the Employability of a Commercial Driver

Commercial drivers with a clean PSP have more options than drivers with moving violations, collisions, and “serious offenses.” The impact of a clean PSP record on a commercial driver’s career is positive—higher pay, better benefits, and possibly preferential treatment by fleet managers.

Fleet managers know that maintaining a clean PSP record shows responsibility and professionalism. They know these are highly valued traits in the trucking industry and often reward those drivers with better routes.

Despite your best efforts, traffic citations happen. It is imperative not to ignore traffic tickets or simply pay the fine. Commercial driver’s license (CDL) holders must challenge every moving violation in court with a CA traffic attorney.    

Consult with Bigger & Harman About Your Commercial Tickets in Woodland, CA 

Choose Bigger & Harman, APC, when facing a possible blemish to your clean PSP. 

Contact us at (661) 349-9300 or use our user-friendly contact form or email We’re here for you. 

Download our e-book, Protecting Your Commercial Driver License.

Se habla Español (661) 349-9755.


The DMV Portal CA Commercial Driver Handbook.

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