Research Reports

Application of a Rural Safety Policy Improvement Index (RSPII) Framework

Principal Investigator:

Keith K Knapp, Brad Utecht

June 2010

Report no. CTS 10-07

Projects: Investigation of Policy-Based Statewide Safety Measure Quantification

Topics: Driver Performance and Behavior, Rural Transportation, Safety

Six legislatively-based safety improvement measures (LSIMs) were proposed for evaluation within a rural safety policy improvement index (RSPII) framework during Phase I of this project. This report documents the step-by-step application of the RSPII framework and its rural roadway crash fatality reduction results for these LSIMs. Several approaches to the framework application were completed for each LSIM and the results compared. It was estimated (based on the selection of one framework outcome for each LSIM) that rural roadway crash fatalities could be reduced by 209 from the primary enforcement of seat belt use, 299 from universal motorcycle helmet use, 322 from the regular application of sobriety checkpoints, 120 from graduated driver licensing program upgrades, 268 from the mandatory ignition interlock installation, and 699 from automated speed enforcement. These estimates cannot be summed, however, because the fatalities impacted by these LSIMs sometimes overlap. The assumptions and generalizations required to overcome challenges to the RSPII framework application will also have an impact on its results. Additional LSIM research is suggested and it is recommended that the estimates in this report be used as a starting point for rural roadway safety discussions and the completion of more accurate individual state RSPII framework applications.

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