Research Program Design---Administration of Highway and Transportation Agencies. Highway Safety Leadership Organizational Issues; A Survey of States and Recommendations for Sustaining Progress

Reducing highway deaths to a national rate of 1.0 fatalities per 100 million vehicle-miles-traveled by 2008 is an AASHTO goal, and State Departments of Transportation are being encouraged to adopt a strategic approach to safety within their State. States have responded well - many DOTs have volunteered to step forward to implement specific elements of the AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan. Top-level leadership and support within DOTs is an essential ingredient for success. In addition, strong alignment among organizations responsible for safety across the spectrum of engineering, education, enforcement, and emergency services (the 4Es of highway safety) is critical for success. Responsible State entities receive funds for these activities from a range of sources; including Federal-Aid Highway funds for safety from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Highway Safety Grants from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and Motor Carrier Safety Assistance funds from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). In addition to the DOT and any other State entities responsible for these programs, participants in a strategic highway safety approach should include motor vehicle licensing/registration departments, traffic enforcement agencies, and emergency responders. States currently have diverse institutional and organizational arrangements for carrying out '4E' safety initiatives. In some States, the NHTSA-managed programs are located within the DOT while in others they are separate entities such as a Department of Public Safety. The same is true of FMCSA programs, traffic enforcement organizations, and motor vehicle entities. Successful leadership strategies that can be sustained over time will be different within each organizational framework. No matter what type of organizational diversity exists, the objective should be to achieve a comprehensive and strategic approach in which all State organizations are united toward a highway safety goal utilizing data-driven decision making and consistent safety performance measures. The objectives of this project are to (1) describe where responsibilities for key highway safety functions reside in State transportation organizations, (2) describe examples of successful safety leadership initiatives within these organizational contexts, and (3) formulate appropriate conclusions regarding how best to create and sustain safety leadership efforts within various organizational frameworks. This work will also: (a) describe the necessary preconditions to successful leadership efforts among different State organizations, (b) clarify the principal challenges/barriers to achieving a comprehensive, strategic approach to highway safety, (c) suggest potential alternative models of institutional configurations/activities which contribute to success, and (d) identify supportive activities (technical, policy, and programmatic) by AASHTO and other associations and other levels of government and stakeholders.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $100000.00
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-24(44)

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Transportation Research Board

    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Niessner, Charles

  • Principal Investigators:

    McGovern, Thomas

  • Start Date: 20051025
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20070831
  • Source Data: RiP Project 11646

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01460628
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: National Cooperative Highway Research Program
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-24(44)
  • Files: RIP
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 1:29PM