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FHWA Home / Safety / HSIP / Safety Performance Management Target Setting

Safety Performance Management Target Setting Communication Plan and Toolkit

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January 2018

FHWA-SA-18-006


U.S. Department of Transportation triskelion logo.
U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration


Table of Contents

Introduction
  Safety Performance Management Purpose
Section 1: Safety Performance Management Communication Plan
  How To Use This Plan and Toolkit
Section 2: Safety Performance Management Communication Toolkit
  Toolkit Element 1: Dashboard "Report Card"
  Toolkit Element 2: Presentation Slides
  Toolkit Element 3: Press Releases
  Toolkit Element 4: Memo To Target Approvers
  Toolkit Element 5: Talking Points
  Toolkit Element 6: Social Media Kit
    Target Dashboard
    Presentation Slides
    Press Releases
    Memo To Target Approvers
    Talking Points
    Social Media Posts – Twitter
    Social Media Posts – Facebook/LinkedIn


INTRODUCTION

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) created a performance-based Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) through the establishment of the Safety Performance Management Measures (PM) Final Rule. The Safety PM Final Rule appeared in the Federal Register on March 15, 2016, with an effective date of April 14, 2016. This Final Rule adds Part 490 to Title 23 of the Code of Federal Regulations to implement the performance management requirements in 23 U.S.C. 150.

The Safety PM Final Rule requires that State departments of transportation (DOTs) and metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs) establish targets for five safety performance measures. State DOTs also have the option to establish any number of urbanized area targets and one non-urbanized area target for any or all of the measures. These are the five performance measures reported annually in the State's HSIP Final Report:

  1. Number of fatalities.
  2. Rate of fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT).
  3. Number of serious injuries.
  4. Rate of serious injuries per 100 million VMT.
  5. Number of non-motorized fatalities and number of non-motorized serious injuries.

For more information related to the Safety PM Final Rule, including guidance, Q&A, target-setting and safety data resources, visit the FHWA's Safety PM Website at https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/hsip/spm/.

SAFETY PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT PURPOSE

The purpose of this communication plan is to assist State DOTs and MPOs in communicating why safety performance targets are being established, which stakeholders are affected (either directly or tangentially), and how they can be involved in helping establish the targets or in target achievement.

Communicating to those with a role or interest in the process or outcomes throughout all stages of the safety performance target-setting process is important and impacts audiences of varying expertise. This communication plan and associated communication toolkit items are valuable tools that can:

Communicating why safety targets are being established and how we can achieve them to such a variety of audiences will have its challenges. As States and MPOs seek stakeholder input, many groups may cite challenges that cause them to be hesitant in supporting the safety targets. Some of these challenges could include:

Section 1 further describes why safety performance targets are established, which stakeholders are affected, and how each can be involved in helping establish the targets or in target achievement.

This Communications Plan and Toolkit is organized into two sections:

Section 1: SAFETY PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT COMMUNICATION PLAN which describes how to use the plan and outreach items.

Section 2: SAFETY PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT COMMUNICATION TOOLKIT which describes each tool, gives instructions for use, and specifies the targeted audience and forums for use.

SECTION 1: SAFETY PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT COMMUNICATION PLAN

How to Use this Plan and Toolkit

The Safety Performance Management Communication Plan and Toolkit describes:

  1. The variety of audiences who will have a lead or supporting role in target setting and achievement or who may be interested in potential outcomes and impacts associated with implementing Safety Performance Management.
  2. The communications and messages in which these groups will most likely be interested or questions they may have.
  3. The elements of the Communications Toolkit that can be used to develop customized messages, including guidance on appropriate communication forums and whom the messages target.

Working with audiences of varying technical knowledge and perspectives related to safety performance management will bring out a variety of sometimes competing priorities among groups. While the goal of safety performance management is to work toward zero deaths and serious injuries on our roadways, some groups might perceive the target-setting effort as an opportunity to seek additional safety funding, whereas others might simply want their voices to be heard and to provide input that more closely aligns with other State goals (e.g., public health goals, other transportation goals). Still others require nothing, and for these groups, messaging is purely informational.

It is also important to be mindful of the relationship among those who (1) set and make progress toward the targets, (2) have input into the target-setting process, and (3) have no role in target setting. Safety is a shared responsibility among those who design, build, manage, and use roads and vehicles. All elements of the road system should come together in an integrated way to design and maintain a safe system that will contribute to improved transportation safety.

Audience and stakeholder parties fall into four distinct groups, and all rely upon one another. Figure 1, on page 5, illustrates the relationships among these groups, which include:

GROUP 1: TECHNICAL EXPERTS
GROUP 2: TARGET SUPPORTERS

State DOTs, MPOs, local agencies, FHWA

Are held accountable for target achievement and may need data, assistance with analysis, or target approval. Staff from FHWA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are available to provide technical assistance to this group.

Local and Tribal road agencies, planners, enforcement, emergency medical services

May provide economic, demographic, and other data but in return require a deeper understanding of the effort, the possible result, and why it matters to them.
GROUP 3: GENERAL PUBLIC & MEDIA
GROUP 4: TARGET APPROVERS

Those who may want information or the opportunity to participate in transportation processes

May be positively influenced to make wiser roadway safety decisions and to share safety messages with their peers.

State DOT decision makers, State highway safety offices, MPO policy boards, and elected officials

Provide the final approval before annual targets are set. This group holds an interest in achieving performance targets across a variety of topics and needs to ensure that targets complement other goals across the organization.


Diagram illustrates the Collaborative Process to Set and Achieve Safety Performance Measure Targets.
Figure 1. Collaborative Process to Set and Achieve Safety Performance Measure Targets.

SECTION 2: SAFETY PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT COMMUNICATIONS TOOLKIT

This section describes each toolkit element, when and how to use each tool, the key messages and audiences related to each tool, and how to customize each tool to the agency's context.

TOOLKIT ELEMENT 1: DASHBOARD "REPORT CARD"

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 1

TARGET AUDIENCE: Technical Experts, Target Supporters, Media & Public, Target Approvers.


DESCRIPTION: The dashboard report card is a customizable graphic that displays progress being made on all five Safety Performance Measures and indicates whether targets are being achieved.


WHEN TO USE: Agencies and MPOs should update this graphic in "real time," or annually after progress has been evaluated. Dashboards serve as a way to share "how we're doing" with interested audiences. The graphics for each measure can be added to websites or placed in presentations or press releases to create visibility, generate discussion, and track progress.


HOW TO USE: Follow instructions within the Microsoft Excel tabs (one for each PM). Graphics will auto-populate and can be embedded into website content, used in memos and emails, or placed in other communication pieces.


In this example dashboard for fatality rate, the indicator is in the shape of an arc whose colors go from green to yellow to red. The green indicator is the range from zero to targeted 200 fatalities. The yellow scale is not defined, but is bisected by a black bar indicating 292.6 fatality rate at the upper end of the arc. The red scale is not defined.
Figure 2. Example of Fatality Performance Measure Graphic.

TOOLKIT ELEMENT 2: PRESENTATION SLIDES

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 2

TARGET AUDIENCE: Target Supporters, Media & Public.


DESCRIPTION: These slides communicate, inform, and remind viewers of the previous year's target-setting process and the results (if known or are being tracked in "real time"). They assist with soliciting input on:

  1. Refinements to the next year's target-setting process, including data elements used and analyses performed, stakeholders consulted, and reprioritization of program- level efforts and projects necessary to achieve the desired results.
  2. Potential refinements in practices that could help yield success.
  3. How these groups can affect target achievement.
  4. How to communicate rising targets (if applicable).

WHEN TO USE: Consider using slide decks at forums where stakeholders discuss how safety visions align, but also where opportunities for improved collaboration and refined practices exist.


HOW TO USE:

Fill in red colored textred text throughout slides with agency- or topic- specific speaking points.

Note: The slides are intentionally unformatted. This allows agencies to drop slides into agency or event branding, as developed by your communications team.


Collage of slides in the presentation associated with this document.
Figure 3. Presentation template and slides.


TOOLKIT ELEMENT 3: PRESS RELEASES

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 3

TARGET APPROVERS: Media & Public.


DESCRIPTION: Press releases communicate that the DOT, in collaboration with safety partners, has either (1) established safety performance targets or (2) is beginning the process of establishing targets.

Each press release directs readers to a website for more information, asks the public to contribute to the process, and encourages people to use safe biking, walking, and driving habits.


WHEN TO USE: Consider using a press release during target setting, after targets have been established, and potentially again after performance has been reported.


HOW TO USE:

Fill in red colored textred text with agency- or contact-specific information. Use the appropriate press release, depending on the phase of target setting.



TOOLKIT ELEMENT 4: MEMO TO TARGET APPROVERS

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 4

TARGET AUDIENCE: Target Approvers


DESCRIPTION: The memo summarizes activities and plans for the leaders in organizations involved in the target approval process.


WHEN TO USE: Consider developing memos when approvals are needed for the target-setting methodology and inputs, when making a recommendation as to stakeholders to be consulted, and to update leaders on the previous year's performance.


HOW TO USE:

Fill in red colored textred text with agency- or contact-specific information.



TOOLKIT ELEMENT 5: TALKING POINTS

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 5

TARGET AUDIENCE: Target Supporter, Media & Public.


DESCRIPTION: Talking points communicate the safety performance target setting process and achievement.


WHEN TO USE: Consider using talking points when short interactions take place with the public and target supporter groups. Their purpose is twofold: to support conversations on how each group can contribute to target achievement and to describe the performance measures themselves.


HOW TO USE:

Fill in red colored textred text with agency- or contact-specific information.

 

TOOLKIT ELEMENT 6: SOCIAL MEDIA KIT

 

 

LINK TO ELEMENT 6

TARGET AUDIENCE: Technical Experts, Target Supporter, Media & Public, Target Approvers.


DESCRIPTION: The social media kit communicates activities and updates during the three phases of the safety performance target-setting process (i.e., setting, performance, and achievement periods) using for example, Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. Postings could also include graphics and hashtags, as appropriate.


WHEN TO USE: All stages of target setting.


HOW TO USE:

Fill in red colored textred text with agency- or contact-specific information. Be sure to update posts with correct links each year.

 

TOOLKIT ELEMENT 1: TARGET DASHBOARD

Create this dashboard gauge to visually represent how a State is performing in each safety performance measure, compared to baseline values and the established target.

In this example dashboard for fatality rate, the indicator is in the shape of an arc whose colors go from green to yellow to red. The green indicator is the range from zero to targeted 200 fatalities. The yellow scale is not defined, but is bisected by a black bar indicating 292.6 fatality rate at the upper end of the arc. The red scale is not defined.

The green colored textgreen range indicates the values from zero to the target set.

The yellow colored textyellow range indicates the values from the set target to the baseline value.

The red colored textred range indicates the values from the baseline to the maximum number of fatalities contributing to the 5 year rolling average.

Paste the graphic into any Microsoft program, or move it to a graphic program to create a jpg.

DOWNLOAD EXCEL WORKSHEET

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TOOLKIT ELEMENT 2: PRESENTATION SLIDES

Collage of slides.

DOWNLOAD POWERPOINT TEMPLATE AND SLIDES: [ PPT, HTML ]

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TOOLKIT ELEMENT 3: PRESS RELEASES

FOR USE DURING TARGET-SETTING

red colored text[STATE DOT] ASKS FOR PUBLIC INPUT ON SHORT-TERM ROADWAY SAFETY TARGETS MOVING TOWARDS SAFER ROADWAYS

As red colored text[STATE DOT] considers how we–and you–can make a noticeable reduction in roadway deaths and injuries, we ask for your suggestions and input. red colored text[STATE] is beginning its annual process to evaluate past efforts and future potential to establish and achieve safety performance targets for the following measures:

  1. Number of roadway fatalities.
  2. Fatality rate (accounts for changes in the number of miles driven).
  3. Overall number of roadway serious injuries.
  4. Serious injury rate (accounts for changes in the number of miles driven).
  5. The number of pedestrian, bicycle, and other nonmotorized roadway fatalities and serious injuries.

Please consider joining us in finding ways to bring our families, friends, and co-workers home safely every day.

For more information on red colored text[STATE DOT'S] safety performance progress or results, go to red colored text[LINK] or contact red colored text[NAME EMAIL PHONE].

DOWNLOAD WORD TEMPLATE

FOR USE AFTER TARGETS ARE ESTABLISHED

MOVING TOWARDS SAFER ROADWAYS

red colored text[STATE DOT] has set its red colored text[YEAR] annual safety performance targets as part of its long-term goal of reducing fatalities and serious injuries on our roadways. Safety performance targets are focused on making short-term progress toward the ultimate goal of zero roadway deaths, which means families, friends, and co-workers making it home safely every day.

Last year, red colored text[STATE DOT] red colored text[achieved/did not achieve] the established targets. As a result, red colored text[enter actions here].

For the upcoming year, red colored text[STATE DOT] has established the following targets through collaboration with statewide safety partners:

  1. red colored text["Reduce overall" or "Limit the overall rise in the"] number of roadway fatalities from red colored textXXX to red colored textXXX.
  2. red colored text["Reduce the" or "Limit the overall rise in the"] fatality rate (accounts for changes in the number of miles driven) from red colored textXXX to red colored textXXX.
  3. red colored text["Reduce overall" or "Limit the overall rise in the"] overall number of roadway serious injuries from red colored textXXX to red colored textXXX.
  4. red colored text serious injury rate (accounts for changes in the number of miles driven) from red colored textXXX to red colored textXXX.
  5. red colored text["Reduce" or "Limit the overall rise in the"] the number of pedestrian, bicycle, and other non-motorized roadway fatalities and serious injuries from red colored textXXX to red colored textXXX.

Working together, we will meet these targets. One of the most important things you can do is consider safety while driving, walking, and biking. Making conscious decisions to obey speed limits; wearing seatbelts; avoiding distracted driving, biking, and walking; and driving sober are crucial to achieving these goals. You also can get involved by red colored text[INSERT HERE] .

For more information on red colored text[STATE DOT'S] safety performance progress or results, go to red colored text[LINK] or contact red colored text[NAME EMAIL PHONE]. Your voice matters. Find out how you can be involved.

DOWNLOAD WORD TEMPLATE

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TOOLKIT ELEMENT 4: MEMO TO TARGET APPROVERS

TO: red colored text[STATE DOT TARGET APPROVER(S) such as DOT Director, Commissioner, or Chief Engineer]

FROM:

DATE:

SUBJECT: APPROVAL OF SAFETY PERFORMANCE TARGETS FOR HIGHWAY SAFETY IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM ANNUAL REPORT

Each year, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) requires States to establish safety performance targets, as mandated by the Safety Performance Management Measures (Safety PM) Final Rule.1 These targets can be used to measure the performance of safety improvements implemented through the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP). The overall goal is to significantly reduce fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads by creating a data-driven, performance-based HSIP. The targets, reported in the State's annual HSIP report, are due August 31 of each year.

Your approval is requested to help ensure red colored text[STATE] sets reasonable and achievable targets for the upcoming year.

Safety performance targets relate to the following five areas: (1) number of fatalities, (2) rate of fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled (VMT), (3) number of serious injuries, (4) rate of serious injuries per 100 million VMT, and (5) number of non-motorized fatalities plus non-motorized serious injuries.

red colored text[DEPARTMENT or CONTACT NAME and TITLE] is requesting your approval regarding these targets for their inclusion into this year's HSIP report. As a red colored text[WHY WOULD THEY HAVE INTEREST], you hold interest in the red colored text[SETTING/OUTCOME]of these targets, and red colored text[DEPARTMENT NAME]wants to consider all scenarios before finalizing targets.

Currently, these are red colored text[STATE'S] rolling 5-year averages for each performance target:

PERFORMANCE MEASURE 5-YEAR ROLLING AVERAGES TARGET RATIONALE
red colored text[20XX – 20XX]
BASELINE PERFORMANCE
red colored text[20XX – 20XX]
PROPOSED TARGET
Number of fatalities (per year) red colored textXX red colored textXX  
Rate of fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled red colored textXX red colored textXX  
Number of serious injuries (per year) red colored textXX red colored textXX  
Rate of serious injuries per 100 million vehicle miles traveled red colored textXX red colored textXX  
Number of non-motorized fatalities and non-motorized serious injuries red colored textXX red colored textXX  

If red colored text[STATE] is unable to meet at least four of the five targets, or if the performance outcome is not better than the baseline performance, red colored text[STATE] will be required to use obligation authority equal to the HSIP apportionment for HSIP projects only and submit an HSIP Implementation Plan.

Your input and approval is requested by red colored text[DUE DATE AND TIME] to red colored text[DEPARTMENT OR CONTACT NAME].

Any questions can be sent to red colored text[CONTACT FOR QUESTIONS].


1 The Safety PM Final Rule adds part 490 to Title 23 of the Code of Federal Regulations to implement the performance management requirements in 23 U.S.C. 150.

DOWNLOAD WORD TEMPLATE

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TOOLKIT ELEMENT 5: TALKING POINTS

Target Audience: Media & Public

Target Audience: Target Supporter

[ Back ]

TOOLKIT ELEMENT 6: SOCIAL MEDIA POSTS

TWITTER

TARGET SETTING PHASE – BEGINNING OF THE YEAR THROUGH AUGUST

PERFORMANCE PHASE – THROUGHOUT THE YEAR

ACHIEVEMENT PHASE – AFTER DETERMINATIONS ARE FINALIZED

DOWNLOAD WORD TEMPLATE

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Facebook / LinkedIn

TARGET SETTING PHASE – BEGINNING OF THE YEAR THROUGH AUGUST

PERFORMANCE PHASE – THROUGHOUT THE YEAR

DOWNLOAD WORD TEMPLATE

[ Table of Contents ]

Page last modified on May 29, 2018
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