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Get Stakeholders Involved!

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“Coming together is an accomplishment, staying together is progress, working together is a success.” (Henry Ford)

A Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) is a statewide-coordinated safety plan that provides a comprehensive framework for reducing highway fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads. An SHSP is developed in a cooperative process with State, Federal, local, Tribal, and other public- and private-sector safety stakeholders. It is a data-driven, multiyear comprehensive plan that establishes statewide goals, objectives, and key emphasis areas and integrates the 4 Es of highway safety—engineering, education, enforcement, and emergency medical services (EMS).

The SHSP allows highway safety programs and partners in a State to work together in an effort to align goals, leverage resources, and collectively address the State’s safety challenges. States must develop the SHSP in consultation with stake-holders identified in legislation, such as representatives of major modes of transportation; Federal, State, local, and Tribal safety stakeholders; State and local traffic enforcement officials; etc. A State also may wish to consult with additional stakeholders depending on their transportation safety needs. There are other agencies and organizations that are interested in traffic safety, and could be valuable contributors to an SHSP effort, such as Departments of Health and Education, major employers, colleges and universities, etc. When identifying SHSP partners—think broadly.

The Role of Safety Stakeholders

Emphasis areas in the SHSP represent the most critical safety concerns within a State and are matched with strategies and action steps for eliminating roadway fatalities and serious injuries. This is an excellent starting point to focus leadership support. For instance, if work zone safety is an emphasis area, then a leader could champion a Work Zone Safety Week every year to bring awareness to the issue. Being visible, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic about safety issues identified in the SHSP generates and sustains continued motivation among all safety partners.

Get Your Partners Involved

Transportation safety is a diverse and complex field. States are implementing and updating SHSPs in collaboration with their safety stakeholders to ensure “emphasis areas” or safety priorities focus on areas with the greatest potential to reduce fatalities and serious injuries. Generally, the 4 Es of safety define the broad stakeholder partners who care about safety and are responsible for making the roads safe for all users. Their role is to provide the 4 E perspective to the SHSP process. Stakeholders from the 4 Es are typically from the following:

Benefits of Collaboration

There are a number of benefits for establishing a broad-based SHSP coalition, including the following:

A Passion for Saving Lives

Who are the most likely candidates for involvement in the SHSP? The most obvious choices are those who work in traffic safety such as a traffic safety engineer or law enforcement officer. The best SHSP stakeholders also are:

If you know someone who is interested in getting involved, recommend they do the following:

Once stakeholders are involved, be sure to develop roles and responsibilities for individuals who participate as members of an Executive Committee, Steering Committee, and Emphasis Area Team. Identify the time commitment and how often these groups meet. Provide suggestions for other types of involvement such as attending a safety summit, and other SHSP related meetings and events.

Remind all stakeholders to be safety ambassadors and role models; meaning they should drive the speed limit, pay attention, drive sober, always buckle up and make sure family, friends, and colleagues do the same.

SHSP programs are making a difference. Urge people to become part of this exciting and worthwhile effort. For more information, contact the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), which is located in every State plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

FHWA Division Offices

FHWA Office of Safety

You also can visit the SHSP Community of Practice for SHSP information and resources.

<< Strategic Highway Safety Plan - Leadership that Saves Lives Table of Contents  
Page last modified on June 17, 2011
Safe Roads for a Safer Future - Investment in roadway safety saves lives
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