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FHWA Home / Safety / Intersection / Low-Cost Safety Enhancements for Stop-Controlled and Signalized Intersections

Low-Cost Safety Enhancements for Stop-Controlled and Signalized Intersections

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1. Introduction

Nationally, at least 21 percent of all fatalities, 52 percent of injuries, and 45 percent of property damage crashes occur at or near intersections. Recognizing the size of the problem, many States have identified intersection safety strategies to help achieve a statewide fatality or crash reduction goal within their Strategic Highway Safety Plans.

A systematic approach involving the application of low-cost, effective countermeasures at a large number of intersections which are experiencing crashes can collectively reduce substantive numbers of statewide intersection crashes and fatalities. Intersections with crash experience are defined as those with crash levels at or above defined crash level thresholds, (usually described in terms of number of crashes per intersection occurring over a 5-year period) where the application of the low-cost countermeasure will be cost effective. Most intersections experiencing crashes meet the minimum Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) standards, but added countermeasures are needed to reduce future crash potential.

The purpose of this document is to present information on suggested effective, low-cost intersection countermeasures developed using intersection safety research results and input from an intersection safety expert panel. These low-cost countermeasures can be applied to a large number of intersections with a high frequency of crashes using a systematic approach. The net impact of such an approach can produce significant reductions in statewide intersection crashes, fatalities, and serious injuries. Low-cost countermeasures are defined as those ranging from $1,000 to $50,000 per intersection.

The suggested low-cost countermeasures and the intersection conditions where these countermeasures can be most cost-effectively deployed are as follows:

Stop-Controlled Intersections

Signalized Intersections

Stop-Controlled and Signalized Intersections

These sets of countermeasures were developed by integrating available research findings and input from intersection safety experts and practitioners in the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) intersection focus states.

A description of the crash problem and deployment characteristics for each of the countermeasures follows.

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Page last modified on September 4, 2014.
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