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Road Safety Audits (RSA)

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Newsletter: Winter 2009 – Volume 2, Number 2

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In This Issue

Contact: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/rsa
Becky Crowe, FHWA RSA Program Manager

Moving from a Busy 2009 to a Busy 2010!

By Becky Crowe, RSA Program Manager
FHWA Office of Safety

This has been a busy year for the Road Safety Audit (RSA) program. We held an RSA Forum in Florida in September with over 75 participants, introduced a Pedestrian RSA Guidelines and training course, launched a new RSA video, provided RSA training to 21 states, and sponsored sessions on RSAs at the AASHTO Value Engineering Conference, APWA World Congress, NACO Annual Conference, and ATTSA Traffic Expo. FHWA is committed to sharing this tool with our partners because we believe RSAs are a proactive approach to reducing injuries and fatalities on our nation's highways. During FY2010, we will have a special focus on how to implement RSAs during the design phase and integrating RSAs in the value engineering process.

Have you been busy conducting RSAs this summer and fall? Have you been thinking of conducting RSAs, but are unsure where to begin? Please share your progress with us, or contact us if you would like more information on how to get started. We are here to help your RSA program, whether it is just starting or well advanced.

Signature of Becky Crowe

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Quarterly Highlights

Eighty-Eight Attend Southeast Road Safety Audit Forum and Workshop. The RSA Forum and Workshop were held September 21-23, 2009 in Orlando, Florida. Seventeen speakers presented on various topics, including:

The Forum focused on emphasis areas shared between States including current progress, success stories, and ways to advance the implementation of RSAs. This event was a joint eff ort between the FHWA, Florida DOT, Florida T2 Center and the Florida Community Traffic Safety Team Coalition. The dynamic conversation circle on day two allowed attendees to ask questions; discussion topics included:

Speaker presentations are available for download at: http://www.t2ctt.ce.ufl.edu/t2ctt/Southeastern_RSA_Forum_2009.asp?SnID=300839595

Pedestrian Road Safety Audit Training Courses
In response to the 2005 increase in pedestrian fatalities, the FHWA Office of Safety developed “Pedestrian Road Safety Audit (PRSA) Guidelines and Prompt Lists” for State and local governments. The purpose of these guidelines is to provide a multi-disciplinary team approach to solving pedestrian safety issues within a roadway corridor or intersection environment.

FHWA recently partnered with the North Carolina DOT and New Mexico DOT to train over 50 State and local representatives on the new PRSA Guidelines. The NCDOT training in Raleigh brought together focus states from the East and participants were led through an actual PRSA on Hillsborough Avenue on the North Carolina State University campus. The second training course was held in Santa Fe on Cerrillos Road, which is a primary arterial serving the city. The multidisciplinary team identified many countermeasures that will improve pedestrian and bicycle travel in and through this busy government and commercial center. These training courses provided Focus States with the tools to conduct PRSA training in their states.

Training on the PRSA Guidelines and prompt lists is available to Focus States through The FHWA Resource Center. This will ensure that the Focus States can successfully use this tool to reduce pedestrian crashes and fatalities. These Guidelines are available for review and download at: http://drusilla.hsrc.unc.edu/cms/downloads/PedRSA.reduced.pdf

Please contact craig.allred@dot.gov or dick.schaffer@dot.gov for additional information.

The RSA Program needs your ideas! Please contact the RSA Program Manager, Becky Crowe, at Rebecca.Crowe@dot.gov if you have an idea for a new or revised RSA resource that would be helpful to your agency. Any and all ideas are welcome!

Do you know of a transportation partner, manager, or coworker who would benefit from this RSA newsletter? Please feel free to forward it accordingly. People may also subscribe to the quarterly electronic newsletter by sending an email to heather.rigdon.ctr@dot.gov with “subscribe RSA newsletter” in the subject line.

As always, please check out our RSA website at http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/rsa for the latest new resources.

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RSA Snapshots highlight how states are implementing RSAs.

Alabama License Plate

Tim Taylor,
Alabama DOT
State Traffic Engineer

As part of an Alabama DOT program to upgrade two-lane, undivided highways to four-lane, divided highways, RSAs were conducted on several State Routes. RSAs teams identifi ed several positive practices associated with two-lane to four-lane conversions as well as several safety principles and low cost improvements that can be applied to future conversions.

Georgia License Plate

Norm Cressman,
Georgia DOT
Safety Program Manager

An RSA was conducted in Brooks County, Georgia in response to operation and safety concerns at an intersection. The RSA identifi ed several safety issues including pavement marking conditions, sight distance, lighting conditions and signing.

Iowa License Plate

Tom Welch,
Iowa DOT Safety Engineer

Iowa is using RSAs on their 3R (resurfacing, restoration, rehabilitation) projects and designated Safety Corridors. Safety Corridors are one of the eight Safety Program Areas in the State’s Comprehensive Highway Safety Plan.

Kentucky License Plate

Ryan Tenges,
FHWA Kentucky Division
Safety Engineer

In order to acquire funding, the Kentucky Highway Safety Improvement Plan requires the use of RSAs on the Low Cost Safety Improvement Program, the Lane Departure-Resurfacing and Roadway Section Programs, and the Drive Smart Safety Corridor Program.

Nevada License Plate

Jaime Tuddao,
Nevada DOT Senior
Road Safety Engineer

RSAs are used regularly on Nevada DOT projects during the pre-construction, construction and/or post construction phase. Nevada is currently developing an RSA policy.

Tennessee License Plate

Gary Ogletree,
Tennessee DOT
Safety Planning

Tennessee has an RSA policy and projects selected for the Tennessee Road Safety Audit Review Program are spot or section locations on Interstates/State Routes and functionally classifi ed local roads for the Hazard Elimination Safety Program list (HESP list). Projects may also be selected as they are qualifi ed for High Risk Rural Roads funds.

To submit your program for RSA Snapshots please email:

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RSA Spotlight

Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) Conducts RSAs; Reveals Low-Cost Countermeasures
Details contributed by Maher Holozadah, Sr. Transportation Engineer

RSA finding: Conflicting Traffic Signal Indications

Degraded Pavement Markings
RSA finding: Degraded Pavement Markings

RSA finding: Lack of Pedestrian Facilities
RSA finding: Lack of Pedestrian Facilities

The Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA), the largest of 17 Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) in Ohio, provides transportation planning assistance to five counties. The region has a population of approximately two million people.

NOACA has, for many years, been engaged in conducting various safety studies under the umbrella of its ubiquitous safety program. RSAs, however, are a recent addition to NOACA's safety program. They emerged in 2008 from a discussion with ODOT after both recognized the signifi cance of using RSAs as a tool to improve the level of road user safety at high crash locations. Therefore NOACA, in partnership with ODOT, joined in an eff ort to achieve the goal of reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities statewide.

NOACA launched its fi rst wave of RSAs in 2009 on twelve high-crash locations throughout their region. These RSAs resulted in numerous low to medium cost improvement recommendations. Such as improved signal phasing and pavement marking upgrades like repainting lines and adjusting stop line locations. Some of these recommendations have been added to currently scheduled improvement projects. NOACA RSAs also engage various personnel and community members to engender a sense of ownership and to help empower them to address safety issues identifi ed in RSAs. They encourage member-jurisdictions to conduct their own road safety audits independently by providing needed up-front assistance.

Several RSA reports can be found on NOACA's Website: www.noaca.org/publications.html

For more information on these RSAs contact:
Maher Holozadah
Senior Transportation Engineer
(216) 241-2414 Ext. 302

Hidden Traffic Signal
RSA finding: Hidden Traffic Signal

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RSAs Status

Below is a map showing the status of RSAs across the US. Do you have other information on RSAs to report for your state? Please let us know!

A map showing the status of RSAs across the US

RSAs in the News

Page last modified on October 15, 2014
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