MPO and SHSO Coordination on Behavioral Traffic Safety

State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs) administer grant funding provided by NHTSA to fund effective behavioral safety countermeasures to reduce collisions. With the introduction of federal requirements for Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) to develop safety performance measures and targets, these organizations are increasingly committed to identifying programs, policies, and projects to help meet regional, and ultimately, statewide safety goals. All states have one or more MPOs that are responsible for planning and programming funds in urbanized areas with at least 50,000 people.  Behavioral traffic safety could be greatly enhanced by increased engagement between SHSOs and MPOs. The latter have a strong understanding of the regional transportation network, the capability to obtain and analyze local crash data, potentially the means and skills to develop transportation safety plans, and connections to local decision makers who can fund and implement investments. Since a large proportion of traffic crashes are caused by human error, progress toward reducing the frequency and severity of traffic crashes can be better accomplished if SHSOs and MPOs initiate steps to work together on regional and local safety needs. Such collaboration could result in better use of local and regional resources and more effectively address behavioral traffic safety issues. Note: For the purposes of this research, behavioral traffic safety is defined as the study of actions and attitudes of all road users. The objective of this research is to develop guidance for MPOs and SHSOs to improve coordination on local and regional behavioral safety efforts to reduce the frequency and severity of traffic crashes. The guidance should describe the mutual benefits of enhanced coordination on local and regional traffic safety behavioral issues, introduce best practices, and develop scalable processes and tools to develop a framework for engaging MPOs to work in collaboration with SHSOs.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $350000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project BTS-06

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Behavioral Traffic Safety Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Governors Highway Safety Association

    444 N. Capitol Street, NW, Suite 722
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, D.C.  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Retting, Richard

  • Performing Organizations:

    Cambridge Systematics, Incorporated

    150 Cambridge Park Drive, Suite 4000
    Cambridge, MA  United States  02140-2369
  • Principal Investigators:

    Denbow, Rich

  • Start Date: 20190617
  • Expected Completion Date: 20220422
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01674393
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project BTS-06
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Jul 2 2018 9:03PM