We challenge you to create a mobile solution to help bus travelers make better-informed decisions and choose safety over price.


Nearly 4,000 people are killed and over 100,000 people are injured each year in crashes involving large trucks and buses.  One life lost is one too many, which is why we need your help!

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) uses a lot of data to determine and identify unsafe bus companies.  When they are identified, we intervene to address safety problems and, when necessary, remove them from the road.  (Visit the links provided in the RESOURCES section below for more information.)

Although much of this information is also available to the public, it can appear vast, complex, and overwhelming to an average bus traveler.  This is where we need you


We need your fresh ideas and innovative solutions to translate these resources of safety data into a web-based or mobile application that helps bus travelers quickly choose the safest bus available.  This is what you need to know about the challenge:

Who:  To be designed by creative college students with imaginative ideas.  (See the Eligibility Rules under RULES)

What:  A mobile solution – a mobile app or a web-accessible tool – along with a summary detailing your solution.  Explain how it presents this important safety information in a simple, intuitive way that would help the average person choose the safest bus available. (See the INSTRUCTIONS below and the RULES page)

When:  January 31st, 2013 (Extended Deadline)

Where:  Submit your app or web tool through this challenge website under the Enter a Submission tab.

Why:  Because making this information easily available will help passengers make better-informed decisions, and save lives one at a time… let’s make 2013 a safer year for everyone on the road!



  • Read through this ABOUT page to get a quick rundown of the challenge with a basic who/ what/ when/ where/ why explanation.
  • Make sure you are eligible by going over the eligibility rules in the RULES section.
  • Read through the JUDGING CRITERIA on the HOME page to familiarize yourself with the criteria on which your app will be judged.
  • Read through the RULES tab to make sure that your concept and design does not go outside of challenge restrictions.
  • Utilize the information and data provided by the sites listed in our RESOURCES section below.
  • When the app is complete and its partnering summary is written, submit it on the ENTER A SUBMISSION page.
  • Good luck!



FMCSA Primary Resources

  • Application Program Interfaces
    • The FMCSA is providing access through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to data from the License and Insurance (L&I) System and the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS).
  • Analysis & Information
  • License & Insurance System
    • The License &Insurance system is an application that is used to enter and display licensing and insurance information for motor carriers, freight forwarders, and property brokers.  This makes it a dependable source for FMCSA to get all of its licensing and insurance data, and a crucial resource for you to use when creating this app.
  • Motor Carrier Management Information System
    • The MCMIS has data from the FMCSA’s Safety Management System (SMS)
  • Safety Measurement System
    • The data that is provided by the SMS uses all of the safety violations that are discovered at roadside and weighs all of those violations based on their potential crash risks.  Then, it measures safety performance in several areas.  These areas are called Behavior Analysis Safety Improvement Categories, or BASICs.  You can see the five publically available BASICs through this challenge page.  The areas that BASICs cover are:
      • Unsafe driving
      • Fatigued driving
      • Driver fitness
      • Controlled substances and/or alcohol
      • Vehicle maintenance
  • Bus/Passenger Carrier Safety Information
  • The FMCSA’s SaferBus App


Alternative and additional data sources


View full rules

How to enter

See the ABOUT page and the RULES page for more information about the challenge and how to enter.


Anne S. Ferro

Anne S. Ferro

Jack Van Steenburg

Jack Van Steenburg
Chief Safety Officer

Bill Quade

Bill Quade
Associate Administrator for Enforcement

Kelly Leone

Kelly Leone
Associate Administrator for Research and Technology

Judging Criteria

  • User Experience
    Is the app easy to use, and does it provide features that a bus traveler would need and want? Is it simple, attractive, efficient, and effective?
  • Creativity and Innovation
    Does the solution present a fresh approach? Does it present the information in an original, engaging way?
  • Accessibility of Safety Data
    Does the solution help provide new ways to better access and utilize bus safety data in the marketplace? Is the app able to combine the large datasets into something easy to understand and relevant to the user?
  • Demonstrates Value to Regulators
    Does the information used in the app and the way it is presented help to shed new light on transportation issues that would otherwise be unknown or overlooked?