A Way to Manage Risk
Highway safety improvement projects are designed to improve safety by minimizing or eliminating risk to roadway users. Rather than managing risk at certain locations, a systemic approach takes a broader view and looks at risk across an entire roadway system. A system-based approach acknowledges crashes alone are not always sufficient to determine what countermeasures to implement, particularly on low volume local and rural roadways where crash densities are lower, and in many urban areas particularly those where there are conflicts between vehicles and vulnerable road users (pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists).
Click here for a list of potential risk factors a state or local agency might consider with the systemic safety approach.
Systemic In Practice
Several states are using the systemic approach to safety and achieving results. For more details, select one of the states below:
Washington State DOT encourages counties to identify systemic safety projects in their 2014 County Safety Program: Call for Projects.
FDOT Grants Citrus County $1.5 Million to Make Curvy Roads Safer
The following case studies illustrate various applications of the Systemic Safety Project Selection Tool:
Thurston County, Washington
A feature on the FHWA Office of Safety Roadway Safety Noteworthy Practice Database allows you to add your own noteworthy practice. Click here to submit your practice. Click here to visit the database.
In the News
Systemic Safety Implementation Peer Exchange
The FHWA Office of Safety will host a Systemic Safety Implementation Peer Exchange in September 2014. The purpose of the peer exchange is to advance the systemic approach to reducing fatalities and serious injuries on local and rural roadways. The peer exchange will provide a forum for participants to discuss and exchange ideas on the application of systemic safety analysis. For additional information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Systemic Safety in the GROW AMERICA Act
The Administration’s reauthorization proposal includes dedicated funding for systemic safety improvements on non-state owned roads. Read more…
Systemic Safety Training & Technical Assistance
Need help implementing the systemic approach to safety in your jurisdiction? Request training or technical assistance through FHWA’s Safety Peer to Peer Program
The Systemic Safety Project Selection Tool
The Systemic Safety Project Selection Tool provides:
- A step-by-step process for conducting systemic safety planning;
- Considerations for determining a balance between spot and systemic safety improvements; and
- Analytical techniques for quantifying the benefits of a systemic safety program.
Download the Systemic Safety Project Selection Tool