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Project Details



Aspen is a software application used by FMCSA and most State Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) enforcement agencies to conduct inspections on CMVs and drivers. The software runs on laptop computers either in a mobile unit (State police cruiser), or at a fixed inspection site. Aspen is used to collect inspection details and print the associated report.

Aspen works in conjunction with other applications to create a full suite of CMV inspection software. These other applications include:

  • ISS (Inspection Selection System) for selecting vehicles and drivers of carriers with data indicating past safety problems, or when data on the carrier is extremely limited. ISS may be used to auto populate the inspection data fields.
  • CDLIS (Commercial Driver's License Information System) Access for checking CMV driver license status and history.
  • SAFER (Safety and Fitness Electronic Records) system for moving inspection data to State offices and SAFETYNET. SAFER also provides a temporary holding area so past inspections can be retrieved and reviewed by other enforcement personnel who may be inspecting the same driver and/or vehicle down the road.
  • PIQ (Past Inspection Query) for retrieving and viewing past inspections from SAFER.
  • Query Central may be used in place of ISS, PIQ, and CDLIS Access for retrieving ISS values, carrier census information, past inspections, driver status and history, PRISM information, authority, and Insurance data, as well as for auto populating the inspection data fields.

Aspen inspections are generally uploaded to SAFER and to the State's SAFETYNET application. Here they are reviewed by management, authorized, and uploaded to MCMIS (Motor Carrier Management Information Systems) which is the FMCSA national repository for CMV data.

Aspen addresses a critical FMCSA need for inspection upload timeliness so the inspection data can be utilized in the SafeStat prioritization algorithm. FMCSA uses this algorithm to rank CMV carriers for safety and prioritize resource allocation for on-site compliance reviews.

The Aspen software may be obtained and used free of charge by authorized FMCSA and State Safety Enforcement personnel.

In addition, third party applications can exchange data with Aspen using a COM call to import and/or export any or all inspection data in an XML format. This allows an Aspen inspection to be auto populated from any third party application, including those used for citation and crash data collection.

For more information about this project, please email Brenda Lantz (brenda.lantz@ndsu.edu).

NDSU Dept 2880P.O. Box 6050Fargo, ND 58108-6050