Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

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					Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan
 ENFORCEMENT           EDUCATION   ENGINEERING   EMS




Vision: All roadway users
arrive safely at their
destinations




January 2007
                Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan




                                    Mission
  Save lives and reduce injuries by using partnerships to coordinate and integrate education,
                enforcement, engineering, and emergency response initiatives.




                                      Vision
                     All roadway users arrive safely at their destinations.




                                        Goal
                   Reduce the number of traffic fatalities from the current
                     number of 931 fatalities in 2005 to 700 by 2011




January 2007
                Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

Executive Summary
Why was this plan developed?                Who was involved in developing this
The current federal transportation bill,    plan?
SAFETEA-LU, requires state                  MDOT led a collaborative plan
transportation agencies to update their     development process to coordinate the
safety plans. Mississippi’s Strategic       efforts and resources of state and local
Highway Safety Plan will bring together     agencies and other organizations.
safety partners for a committed effort to   Participants included:
improve and broaden perspectives on         •   Attorney General’s Office
reducing fatalities and serious injuries.   •   Governor’s Office of Highway Safety
The Mississippi Strategic Highway           •   Mississippi Office of State Aid Road
Safety Plan will prioritize and                 Construction
coordinate safety initiatives so that       •   Mississippi Departments of Public
                                                Safety, Health, and Mental Health
available funding can produce the
                                            •   Federal Highway Administration
greatest results in reducing traffic
                                            •   AAA Ambulance Service
injuries and fatalities.                    •   Mississippi American Academy of
What funding is available for safety            Pediatricians
                                            •   Central Mississippi Planning and
projects?
                                                Development District
Funding is available through a variety
                                            •   County sheriff and city police
of programs at the federal, state and           departments
local levels. At the federal level, the     •   County and city roadway departments
funding is available through the            •   Mississippi State University
Highway Safety Plan (402 Program)           •   Mississippi Center for Technology
administered by the National Highway            Transfer
Traffic Safety Administration, NHTSA;       •   Mississippi Trucking Association
the Federal Motor Carrier Safety            •   Mississippi Road Builders Association
Assistance Program (MCSAP)                  •   Mississippi Safe Kids
administered by Federal Motor Carrier       •   American Traffic Safety Services
                                                Association
Safety Administration, FMCSA; and the
Highway Safety Improvement Program          What is Mississippi’s highway safety
administered by the Federal Highway         goal?
Administration, FHWA. These funds, in       Reduce the number of traffic fatalities
addition to state and local funds, are      from the current number of 931 fatalities
available for use to improve safety in      in 2005 to 700 by 2011.
the emphasis areas identified in the
Strategic Highway Safety Plan.




January 2007
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

What highway safety programs are               Enforcement
working well in Mississippi?                   • Enact a comprehensive GDL and
•   Public information programs such as           enhance driver education
    Click-It or Ticket, DUI, etc.              • Enforce zero tolerance laws to reduce
•   Primary seat belt law                         underage drinking and driving
•   Pockets of Safety pilot program            • Use automated enforcement for
    (outreach to local agencies)                  speeding and red light running
•   Automated crash reporting                  • Implement highly publicized seat belt
    (ReportBeam) and GPS by most law              enforcement campaigns combined with
    enforcement for timely and accurate           public education
    reporting                                  • Seize license plates for DUI offenses
•   Measures to help motorists stay in their   • Use highly publicized DUI checkpoints
    lane, especially on rural highways            or saturation patrols
•   Upgrading two-lane roads to four-lane      Engineering
    facilities with improved shoulders         • Help drivers maintain their lane with
•   New crash records system                      enhanced pavement markings and
                                                  longitudinal rumble strips
What are Mississippi’s “Critical               • Improve shoulders to assist drivers with
Emphasis Areas,” or top priorities, for           recovery
highway safety improvement?                    • Improve roadside safety by removing,
Based on crash statistics and input by            relocating or shielding fixed objects
                                               Education
Mississippi’s safety partners, these
                                               • Provide Courts education and training
Critical Emphasis Areas represent the             regarding issues on impaired driving
areas with the greatest potential to              and young drivers
significantly reduce traffic fatalities in     • Target aggressive drivers with public
Mississippi:                                      information and education campaigns
•   Reducing impaired driving
•   Increasing seat belt usage                 What happens next?
•   Preventing or reducing the severity of     Phase II of Mississippi’s Strategic
    lane departure crashes                     Highway Safety Plan will contain a plan
•   Reducing the over-involvement of           summary for each of the Critical
    young drivers                              Strategies and an analysis of safety
•   Curbing aggressive driving                 investment scenarios. The plan
What are Mississippi’s strategies for          summaries will contain information
improving safety in those areas?               such as expected effectiveness, costs,
Mississippi’s Critical Strategies, listed      keys to success, legislative needs, and
below, provide a coordinated,                  identification of the state agency that
implementable, multi-agency focus for          will take on the responsibility for
Mississippi’s safety initiatives. They are     implementation.
intended to supplement, not replace,           For each Critical Emphasis Area, a
existing safety programs and activities.       multi-agency committee will be formed
                                               to create statewide partnerships and
                                               coordinate implementation.



January 2007
                             Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

Table of Contents
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
1.     INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND................................................................................................... 1-1
       1.1 TRENDS IN HIGHWAY SAFETY .................................................................................................................. 1-3
       1.2 INITIAL REVIEW OF MISSISSIPPI FATAL CRASH INFORMATION ................................................................. 1-4
       1.3 RECENT HIGHWAY SAFETY DEVELOPMENTS ............................................................................................ 1-5
2.     CRITICAL EMPHASIS AREAS .................................................................................................................. 2-1
       2.1 SELF-ASSESSMENT OF MISSISSIPPI’S SAFETY PROGRAM .......................................................................... 2-2
       2.2 REVIEW OF MISSISSIPPI FATAL CRASH INFORMATION .............................................................................. 2-3
       2.3 MISSISSIPPI’S CRITICAL EMPHASIS AREAS (CEAS) - SAFETY PARTNER INPUT ......................................... 2-5
       2.4 MISSION, VISION, AND GOAL .................................................................................................................... 2-8
       2.5 REVIEW OF FATAL CRASH DATA FOR THE CEAS ...................................................................................... 2-9
3.     CRITICAL SAFETY STRATEGIES ........................................................................................................... 3-1
       3.1 PRIORITIZATION ........................................................................................................................................ 3-1
       3.2 SELECTION OF CRITICAL STRATEGIES ....................................................................................................... 3-4
       3.3 WHAT’S NEXT .......................................................................................................................................... 3-6
REFERENCES ....................................................................................................................................................... R-1
APPENDIX A: FACT SHEETS FROM AUGUST 30 SAFETY SUMMIT
APPENDIX B: SAFETY STRATEGIES FOR THE CRITICAL EMPHASIS AREAS
APPENDIX C: HIGH-PRIORITY STRATEGIES IDENTIFIED AT SAFETY SUMMIT


LIST OF FIGURES
1.1   Mississippi SHSP Development Process
1.2   Historic Number of Traffic Fatalities
1.3   Historic Fatality Crash Rate
2.1   Agenda for July 26 Safety Summit
2.2   Mississippi Critical Emphasis Area Screening Process
2.3   Illustration of How Mississippi’s Fatalities Stack Up
3.1   Agenda for August 30 Safety Summit
3.2   General Session and Multi-Disciplinary Groups
3.3   Critical Strategies Identification Process
3.4   Summary of Mississippi’s Critical Strategies
3.5   Deployed Strategies in Other States


LIST OF TABLES
1.1   Mississippi Safety Partners
2.1   AASHTO’s 22 Emphasis Areas
2.2   Summary of Mississippi’s 2000-2004 Fatalities by Emphasis Area
2.3   Mississippi Safety Partners – July 26 Safety Summit Participants
3.1   Primary Source for Initial Strategies Discussed at Safety Summit
3.2   Mississippi Safety Partners – August 30 Safety Summit Participants
3.3   Mississippi SHSP Critical Strategies


January 2007
                     Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

1. Introduction and Background
This Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP), Part I was prepared jointly by the Mississippi
Department of Transportation (MDOT) and Mississippi Department of Public Safety (DPS), in
cooperation with safety partners representing national, state and local agencies as well as
private safety advocacy groups and representatives of the State Legislature. Preparation of this
plan was managed by the steering committee (composed of representatives from MDOT, DPS,
Federal Highway Administration [FHWA], Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
[FMCSA], and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [NHTSA]) with oversight from
the executive committee (Directors from the same agencies). The Mississippi SHSP was
prepared to be consistent with the procedural guidance of FHWA—the process involved a wide
cross-section of safety partners, was data driven, considered all users on all roads, and
addressed the Four Es of Safety (Education, Enforcement, Engineering, and Emergency medical
services).
This document describes the process (see Figure 1.1) that was followed in order to identify
Mississippi’s Safety Mission, Vision, and Goal, the short list of safety emphasis areas that will be
the focus of future safety investments (Critical Emphasis Areas), and the list of critical strategies
(integrating the Four Es of Safety) that will be implemented in order to work towards achieving
the adopted safety goal.

                                     Develop                   Critical
       Select 5                                                                 Critical
                                Comprehensive                 Strategies
        CEAs                                                                   Strategies
                                List of Strategies             Summit
       Adopt
       Mission,                                       Effectiveness &
       Vision                                         Implementation
       & Goal                                              Costs



    Implementation,
      Evaluation,                                       Develop               Develop
                              Prepare
     Refinement by                                     Deployment          Strategy Plan
                            SHSP: Part II
                                                          Plan              Summaries
    Task Teams
                            Strategy Definition & Investment Plan

                                                                                            Prepare
                                                                                          SHSP: Part I

                                                                               Identifies Critical Strategies
        FIGURE 1.1
        Mississippi SHSP Development Process
.



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                   Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

This Strategic Plan consists of two parts – Part 1 identifies the prioritization and screening that
resulted in the selection of Mississippi’s Critical Strategies; Part 2 (a work still in progress) goes
into more depth to define each strategy and to identify an approach to safety investment that
maximizes the probability of achieving the adopted safety goal.
Mississippi has a long tradition of investing in all phases of highway safety. Examples of
strategies and programs that have been successfully deployed to address safety along the State’s
system of highways include:
Education      •   “Drunk Driving: Over the Limit. Under Arrest.” public information and
                   education (PI & E) campaign has been successful in increasing DUI arrests
                   statewide during 2006, particularly those offenders under 21. Mississippi
                   has a strong Zero-Tolerance statute aimed at underage drinking and has a
                   grant funded DUI court monitoring system with MADD Mississippi. The
                   percentage of traffic fatalities identified as alcohol-related in Mississippi
                   remains below the national average each year.
Enforcement •      On May, 27, 2006, Mississippi became the 22nd state to adopt a primary
                   safety belt law. The enforced law, coupled with a strong “Click It or Ticket”
                   PI & E campaign, has increased belt usage statewide from 60.8% in 2005 to
                   73.6% in July, 2006.
               •   Over 85% of all law enforcement jurisdictions in Mississippi collect crash
                   information using the automated crash records system, ReportBeam. This
                   system allows computer editing, scale diagrams, data transfer, supervisory
                   review and database population on a timely basis. There are statistical and
                   analytical report capabilities and custom queries built into this Uniform
                   Crash Information System.
               •   The Office of Highway Safety funds enforcement activities over four blitz
                   periods each year to conduct Saturation Patrols, Sobriety Checkpoints, and
                   Selective Traffic Enforcement by local enforcement departments and all
                   Districts of the Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol. The local departments
                   are selected based on traffic records studies of crashes and citations to
                   ensure traffic safety activities are data-driven.
Engineering    •   The Office of State Aid Road Construction (OSARC) has overseen more
                   than 10,000 miles of county highway (about 15% of all local roads)
                   construction to AASHTO standards; administers the Local System Bridge
                   Replacement and Rehabilitation Program; uses edge rumble stripes and
                   centerline high performance raised pavement markers along with
                   thermoplastic striping for improved safety on the county highway system;
                   and leads annual inspections with a team comprised of the State Aid district
                   engineer, county engineer, and county officials to ensure striping and
                   signing are in place and effective, identify potential roadside hazards, and
                   plan cost effective preventive maintenance strategies.
                    As an agency separate from MDOT but with strong ties to local highway
                    departments, OSARC is positioned to facilitate any sharing of federal safety
                    funds (Highway Safety Improvement Program [HSIP] or High Risk Rural



January 2007                                                                                       1-2
                   Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

                    Roads program) with local agencies. Furthermore, OSARC can also
                    provide important assistance in educating local agencies about the new
                    Mississippi SHSP and the priorities established within the Plan.
               •   MDOT has been deploying innovative edge treatments, including rumble
                   stripes; wider edge lines and the use of durable marking materials; paving
                   shoulders; and providing wider clear zones.
               •   MDOT is performing roadway safety audits. Typically these audits were
                   preformed on existing facilities that were scheduled for reconstruction in
                   the near future.
               •   MDOT’s Safety Analysis Management System (SAMS) project was initiated
                   in 2004 to design and develop a Web-based, GIS-enabled application and
                   supporting geospatial data repository. SAMS will enhance the ability of
                   MDOT and other users to perform both basic and advanced analyses of
                   crash data and roadway characteristics. These analyses range from simple
                   query of crashes and visualization of their locations on a map, to
                   comprehensive statewide analyses of high-crash locations, identification of
                   possible countermeasures, benefit/cost analysis, and countermeasures
                   effectiveness. When completed, SAMS will be the backbone of HSIP. The
                   project has completed the requirements definition and conceptual design
                   phases, as well as the detailed design, development, and deployment of the
                   Alpha release of the software. The Beta release of the software is scheduled
                   for February 2007, while Version 1.0 will be delivered December 2007.
EMS            •   Statewide Trauma System has been established.
               •   Linking data between EMS, enforcement agencies, ambulance services,
                   emergency departments and hospitals to produce crash outcome studies.
               •   Ensure the EMS management information system maintains the NEMSIS
                   Standards (National EMS Information System Standards).
Data           •   Mississippi has made recent investment into data systems technology
                   (ReportBeam and a Safety Analysis Management System [SAMS]) to greatly
                   improve data accuracy and timeliness as well as analysis capabilities.
However, a review of the statewide crash statistics reveals that the number of highway traffic
fatalities is increasing and the fatality rate is flat. This information strongly suggests that a new
focus and direction of safety investments is required.
This Strategic Plan documents the prioritized emphasis areas and the specific strategies that
define this new focus and direction.


1.1 Trends in Highway Safety
From a peak of 54,589 fatalities in 1972, there have been significant reductions in the number of
traffic-related fatalities in the U.S.; the lowest number of fatalities in recent history was 39,250
fatalities in 1992. Since 1992, the number of fatalities nationally has grown just over 10.5 percent
to 43,443 fatalities in 2005, However, data shows that traffic fatalities have grown steadily since
the mid-1970s in Mississippi (see Figure 1.2) (1,2). In comparison to what happened at the


January 2007                                                                                      1-3
                                                Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

national level, there was nearly a 21.5 percent increase in the number of fatalities between 1992
(766 fatalities) and 2004 (931 fatalities). And in 2000, the number of fatalities in Mississippi
peaked at 949. Furthermore, a trend line for the number of traffic fatalities in Mississippi since
1990 shows that there is an average of 11 additional deaths each year.

                                60,000                                                                                              1800
                                                   54,589
                                                                 51,093
                                50,000                                                  47,087                                      1500
                                          50,894                                                                         43,443




                                                                                                                                           MississippiTraffic Fatalities
  National Traffic Fatalities




                                                            44,525     42,589
                                40,000                                                                                              1200
                                                                                              41,508
                                                                                                             948 949        931
                                                                                                       868
                                30,000                                                                                              900

                                                                                        750
                                                                                                                     784
                                                                                  662
                                20,000                                                                                              600
                                                                 546                              Linear Regression of
                                                                                                  Traffic Fatalities
                                                                                                  (1990-2005)


                                10,000             National                                                                         300
                                                   Mississippi

                                    0                                                                                               0
                                         1965      1970     1975       1980     1985     1990       1995         2000        2005
                                                                                Year


FIGURE 1.2
Historic Number of Traffic Fatalities

One reason the number of fatalities has been gradually increasing over the past 30 years is
because the number of vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in Mississippi has increased steadily
during the same time period; from 14.4 billion VMT in 1975 to 38.9 billion VMT in 2004; a
growth of 170%. This trend is expected to continue and suggests the need to develop and
implement more effective strategies if the goal of reducing the number of fatalities and life
threatening (Type A) injuries is to be achieved.
When inspecting the trends in the fatality rates (see Figure 1.3) (1,2), the national trend indicates
a sharp decrease until the early 1990’s with a decrease from 5.50 fatalities per hundred million
VMT (HMVMT) in 1966 to 1.75 fatalities per HMVMT in 1992. This has been followed by a
much slower decreasing trend. Since the early 1990s, the trend in Mississippi’s fatality rate has
closely mirrored what has been occurring in the U.S., but the rate has been much higher than
the National average. In 1992 when the national fatality rate was 1.75 fatalities per HMVMT;




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                                             Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

Mississippi was at a rate of 2.93. Even though the Mississippi fatality rate decreased to 2.28 in
2004, this was still significantly higher than the national rate of 1.48.

                            7

                                         National
                            6            Mississippi
                                  5.50
                                                                                                          Linear Regression of
                            5                                                                             Traffic Fatality Rate
                                              4.74                                                        (1990-2004)
    Traffic Fatality Rate




                                                       4.12
                            4
                                                                3.80
                                                 3.53                                3.45
                                                                         3.17               3.08                   2.94
                            3                                   3.25                                                         2.77
                                                                                                                                         2.28
                                                                          2.58                      2.08                       2.18
                            2
                                         National Safety Goal
                                                                                                   1.75
                                                                                                                        1.58              1.47
                            1


                            0
                                1965        1970            1975       1980         1985           1990           1995            2000
                                                                                    Year


FIGURE 1.3
Historic Fatality Crash Rate



1.2 Initial Review of Mississippi Fatal Crash Information
The initial step in the data driven analytical process involved preparing an overview of fatalities
in order to identify the primary factors contributing to the most serious crashes in Mississippi.
This information was useful in quantifying the magnitude of the problem and indicates a
priority based on the number of fatalities. For this analysis, five years of crash data (2000-2004)
were reviewed to make sure that historic trends were being identified and to reduce the impact
of anomalies (i.e., peaks) that may have occurred in a single year. Based on the number of
fatalities, the primary factors contributing to the most serious crashes in Mississippi are:

•                           Seat belt usage                                     •    Aggressive driving
•                           Roadway departures                                  •    Young drivers
•                           Drivers awareness                                   •    Head-on and across-median crashes
•                           Impaired driving                                    •    Older drivers
•                           Intersections                                       •    Heavy /Commercial vehicles



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                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

1.3 Recent Highway Safety Developments
The more recent trends in fatality statistics, such as an overall increase in the number of
fatalities and a relatively flat fatality rate, have led the American Association of State Highway
and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) to conclude that a new focus on and approach to traffic
safety is necessary to address the increases in fatalities and life threatening (Type A) injuries.
The vision for a new process is documented in the AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan (3)
and the National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Report 500: Guidance for
Implementation of the AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan (4) and NCHRP Report 501: Integrated
Safety Management Process (5).
In addition, the recently passed Federal transportation reauthorization bill (SAFETEA-LU)
requires State Transportation Agencies to update their safety plans and the FHWA’s guidance
(6) basically adopts the recommended safety process outlined in the AASHTO and NCHRP
reports. This process is intended to integrate the efforts of state and local agencies (including
counties, cities, and metropolitan planning organizations) and other organizations. The goal is
for all agencies to work together to improve traffic safety, coordinate plans and efforts, and
focus on addressing fatalities and life threatening (Type A) injuries on all public roadways; not
just the Interstate and state highway system. The process must also involve multi-disciplinary
groups so that the plan addresses the Four Es of Safety - Education, Enforcement, Engineering,
and Emergency medical services (EMS). Agencies are also encouraged to use a data driven
approach to focus efforts on target areas where the greatest number of fatalities occur and
therefore maximizing the capacity of limited resources to prevent serious crashes.
Finally, SAFETEA-LU raises the Highway Safety Improvement Program and accompanying
funds to a core program. SAFETEA-LU also gives states flexibility by allowing them to elect to
fund non–engineering initiatives when specific criteria are met. This means the State’s SHSP is
intended to be a guide for investing in safety strategies in order to be more effective at reducing
traffic fatalities and life threatening (Type A) injuries.
In order to address the frequency, rate and primary factors contributing to fatalities and life
threatening (Type A) injuries in Mississippi, the Mississippi Department of Transportation
along with numerous other Safety Partners (see Table 1.1) worked together to develop the
Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan.




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                       Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

TABLE 1.1
Mississippi Safety Partners
Office of the Lieutenant Governor                        Mississippi Sheriffs’ Association

Office of the Attorney General                           Harrison County Sheriff’s Office

Office of the Speaker of the House                       Hinds County Sheriff’s Office

State Legislators                                        Warren County Sheriff’s Office

Mississippi Department of Transportation                 Panola County Sheriff’s Office

Mississippi Department of Public Safety (including
                                                         Mississippi Police Chiefs’ Association
Planning and State Patrol)

Mississippi Department of Health                         Meridian Police Department

Mississippi Department of Mental Health                  Pearl Police Department

Mississippi Department of Education                      Oxford Police Department

Mississippi Department of Vocational Rehabilitation      Mississippi Judicial College

Governor’s Office of Highway Safety                      Mississippi Association of Supervisors

Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction        County Supervisors

Central Mississippi Planning and Development District    Panola County Road Department

Federal Highway Administration                           Harrison County Road Department

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration           Mississippi Municipal League

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration              City of Ridgeland

Mississippi Trucking Association                         City of Jackson

Mothers Against Drunk Driving                            Metropolitan Planning Organizations

AAA                                                      Mississippi Road Builders Association

AAA Ambulance Services                                   Mississippi Association of Highway Safety Leaders

American Traffic Safety Services Association             Mississippi Emergency Medical Association

Mississippi Operation Lifesaver                          Mississippi Brain Injury Association

Mississippi Safe Kids                                    American Academy of Pediatrics

University of Southern Mississippi                       Mississippi Center for Technology Transfer

Mississippi State University – Social Science Research   Mississippi State University – Center for Advanced
Center                                                   Vehicular Systems




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                     Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

2. Critical Emphasis Areas
The national plan to improve roadway safety is based on AASHTO’s SHSP. In it, 22 key
emphasis areas are identified that broadly address the Four Es of Safety – Education,
Enforcement, Engineering and EMS. Each emphasis area targets a specific set of factors that
contribute to a significant number of deaths on the nation’s roadways and also includes general
strategies for reducing these fatalities. The 22 emphasis areas are grouped into the six parts
(Drivers, Special Users, Vehicles, Highways, Emergency Medical Services, and Management)
and are listed in Table 2.1.
TABLE 2.1
AASHTO’s 22 Emphasis Areas
                                                           Emphasis Areas

Part 1: Drivers         Instituting Graduated Licensing for Young Drivers
                        Ensuring Drivers are Licensed and Fully Competent
                        Sustaining Proficiency in Older Drivers
                        Curbing Aggressive Driving
                        Reducing Impaired Driving
                        Keeping Drivers Alert
                        Increasing Driver Safety Awareness
                        Increasing Seat Belt Usage and Improving Airbag Effectiveness

Part 2: Special Users   Making Walking and Street Crossing Safer
                        Ensuring Safer Bicycle Travel

Part 3: Vehicles        Improving Motorcycle Safety and Increasing Motorcycle Awareness
                        Making Truck Travel Safer
                        Increasing Safety Enhancements in Vehicles

Part 4: Highways        Reducing Vehicle-Train Crashes
                        Keeping Vehicles on the Roadway
                        Minimizing the Consequences of Leaving the Road
                        Improving the Design and Operation of Highway Intersections
                        Reducing Head-On and Across-Median Crashes
                        Designing Safer Work Zones
Part 5: EMS             Enhancing Emergency Medical Capabilities to Increase Survivability

Part 6: Management      Improving Information and Decision Support Systems
                        Creating More Effective Processes and Safety Management Systems


Faced with limited resources that can be directed towards traffic safety programs; the first step
in the strategic safety planning process is to select a limited number of emphasis areas that
represent the greatest opportunity for Mississippi to reduce fatalities and life threatening (Type
A) injuries based on identifying those areas that include the greatest number of serious crashes.




January 2007                                                                                   2-1
                  Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

These are Mississippi’s Critical Emphasis Areas (CEAs). A data driven and stake holder
involved process was utilized to select the short list of emphasis areas.
The three step process used to select the emphasis areas included:
    1. Completion of AASHTO’s self-assessment tool.
    2. Analyze five years of Mississippi’s statewide fatal crash data (2000-2004) related to each
       of the emphasis areas.
    3. Conduct a Safety Summit for the Mississippi safety partners to discuss the relative
       importance of each emphasis area and aid in the selection of Mississippi’s Critical
       Emphasis Areas.
This process (described in the following sections) identified five Critical Emphasis Areas for
Mississippi.


2.1 Self-Assessment of Mississippi’s Safety Program
A self assessment of Mississippi’s current safety program was completed in order to provide
some insight as to which elements of the current safety effort are working well and should
therefore be retained versus which elements are either not working well or are missing
completely.
AASHTO’s self-assessment tool was selected because it was specifically designed to allow
agencies involved in traffic safety to gage their effectiveness. The self-assessment is a series of
questions that evaluate an agency’s progress in each area and the implementation strategies
outlined in the SHSP. After completing the self-assessment, agencies should have an
understanding of their strengths and weaknesses in addressing the 22 key emphasis areas.
Understanding where there is room for improvement, an agency can focus and redirect their
efforts to the areas where the greatest number of fatalities and life threatening (Type A) injuries
can be prevented.
The six Mississippi agencies that completed the self-assessment were:
    1.   Mississippi Department of Transportation
    2.   FHWA – Mississippi Division Office
    3.   Office of State Aid Road Construction
    4.   Mississippi Department of Health
    5.   Mississippi Department of Public Safety - State Highway Patrol
    6.   Mississippi Department of Public Safety – Public Safety Planning
The areas identified where Mississippi is excelling in safety programs are:

    •    Public information and education campaigns (Click-It or Ticket, DUI, etc.).
    •    Passage of a primary seat belt law.
    •    Initiation of the “Pockets of Safety” pilot program through Jackson State’s T2 Center
         (outreach to local agencies).
    •    Use of automated crash report (ReportBeam) and GPS by most law enforcement
         agencies for timely reporting and accurate crash locating.



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                     Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

      •   In-depth focus on lane departure countermeasures on rural (including local) roads.
      •   Conversion of existing two-lane roads to four-lane facilities (improved shoulders,
          slopes, etc.).
    •     Development of a new crash records system.
Through the self-assessment process, key opportunities to further advance highway safety were
identified:

      •   Provide additional traffic safety education for local officials.
      •   Provide resources to improve the local system.
      •   Enhance the graduated driver’s licensing program.
      •   Increase law enforcement staffing levels and provide Sheriffs with greater authority
          (legislative) to enforce speed limits and deter aggressive driving.
    •     Improve emergency medical response times in rural areas.
    •     Implement proven roadway safety strategies proactively instead of only reactively.
    •     Improve crash database access for local agencies.
    •     Improve integration of crash database with traffic volumes, design features, etc.
Note: The self-assessment was designed for any agency or individual that is responsible for or involved in traffic
safety – regardless whether the agency focus is education, enforcement, engineering, emergency medical services, or
policy (i.e., State Legislature). Any individual or agency wishing to complete the Self-Assessment Tool can obtain a
PDF copy from http://safety.transportation.org/assessment.aspx.


2.2          Review of Mississippi Fatal Crash Information
The next step in the screening process involved preparing a summary of Mississippi’s fatal
crashes and fatalities for each of the AASHTO emphasis areas (see Table 2.2). This information
was useful in quantifying the magnitude of the crash problem associated with each emphasis
area and indicates a priority based on the number of fatalities. For this analysis, five years of
crash data (2000-2004) were reviewed to make sure that historic trends were being identified.
Also, using multiple years of data helped lessen the impact of anomalies (i.e., peaks) that may
have occurred in a single year. Based on the number of fatalities, the top ten emphasis areas for
Mississippi are:
             1.    Increasing seat belt usage (2,712 fatalities)
             2.    Keeping vehicles on the roadway (2,142 fatalities)
             3.    Keeping drivers alert (1,792 fatalities)
             4.    Reducing impaired driving (1,654 fatalities)
             5.    Improving the design and operation of highway intersections (950 fatalities)
             6.    Curbing aggressive driving (945 fatalities)
             7.    Instituting graduated licensing for young drivers (899 fatalities)
             8.    Reducing head-on and across median crashes (817 fatalities)
             9.    Sustaining proficiency in older drivers (672 fatalities)
             10.   Making truck travel safer (487 fatalities)




January 2007                                                                                                    2-3
                     Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

TABLE 2.2
Summary of Mississippi’s 2000-2004 Fatalities by Emphasis Area
            Emphasis Area                                        Mississippi Fatalities*                            Percent
Part 1:       Instituting Graduated Licensing for Young          899 fatalities involved a driver under the
                                                                                                                     20%
Drivers       Drivers                                            age of 21

              Ensuring Drivers are Licensed and Fully            438 fatalities involved a driver with an
                                                                                                                     10%
              Competent                                          invalid license

                                                                 672 fatalities involved a driver over the age
              Sustaining Proficiency in Older Drivers                                                                15%
                                                                 of 64
                                                                 945 fatalities listed speeding as a
              Curbing Aggressive Driving                                                                             22%
                                                                 contributing factor

              Reducing Impaired Driving                          1,654 fatalities were alcohol related               38%

                                                                 1,792 fatalities involved an inattentive
              Keeping Drivers Alert                                                                                  41%
                                                                 driver

              Increasing Driver Safety Awareness                 -- Not Applicable --

                                                                 2,712 vehicle occupant fatalities (out of
              Increasing Seat Belt Usage and Improving
                                                                 3,813 vehicle occupant fatalities) were not         71%
              Airbag Effectiveness
                                                                 using a restraint device
Part 2:       Making Walking and Street Crossing Safer           262 pedestrian fatalities                            6%
Special
Users         Ensuring Safer Bicycle Travel                      32 bicyclists fatalities                             1%

Part 3:
              Improving Motorcycle Safety and Increasing
Vehicles                                                         158 motorcyclists fatalities                         4%
              Motorcycle Awareness

              Making Truck Travel Safer                          487 fatalities involving heavy vehicles             11%


              Increasing Safety Enhancements in Vehicles         -- Not Applicable --


Part 4:       Reducing Vehicle-Train Crashes                     68 fatalities involving a collision with a train     2%
Highways                                                         2,142 single vehicle run-off the road
              Keeping Vehicles on the Roadway                                                                        49%
                                                                 fatalities
                                                                 Top 5 most harmful events for single vehicle run -off the
                                                                 road fatalities were:
                                                                  - Collision with a tree (36%)
              Minimizing the Consequences of Leaving the
                                                                  - Overturn (23%)
              Road
                                                                  - Collision with a ditch (10%)
                                                                  - Collision with a culvert (7%)
                                                                  - Collision with an embankment (6%)
              Improving the Design and Operation of Highway
                                                                 950 fatalities at an intersection                   22%
              Intersections
              Reducing Head-On and Across-Median
                                                                 817 head-on and across-median fatalities            19%
              Crashes
              Designing Safer Work Zones                         13 work zone fatalities                             < 1%




January 2007                                                                                                          2-4
                      Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

TABLE 2.2
Summary of Mississippi’s 2000-2004 Fatalities by Emphasis Area
            Emphasis Area                                             Mississippi Fatalities*                      Percent
Part 5:                                                               In 2004, the average response time (time of crash to
EMS                                                                   arrival hospital) was 44.3 minutes for 324 rural fatal
               Enhancing Emergency Medical Capabilities to            crashes (time exceeded one hour in 15 of the crashes).
               Increase Survivability                                 For 88 urban fatal crashes, the average response time
                                                                      was 43.1 minutes (time exceeded one hour in four of
                                                                      the crashes)
Part 6:        Improving Information and Decision Support
                                                                      -- Not Applicable --
Manage-        Systems
ment           Creating More Effective Processes and Safety
                                                                      -- Not Applicable --
               Management Systems
* Source: Fatality Analysis Reporting System (2000 – 2004)
NOTE: Between 2000 and 2004, there were 3,891 fatal crashes and 4,390 traffic fatalities in Mississippi.



2.3 Mississippi’s Critical Emphasis Areas (CEAs) - Safety Partner
    Input
On July 26, 2006; a Safety Summit was held to obtain stakeholders’ input into the selection of
the CEAs and the development of the Mission, Vision, and Goal. The summit included a multi-
disciplinary audience, which included representatives from the agencies listed in Table 2.3.
TABLE 2.3
Mississippi Safety Partners – July 26 Safety Summit Participants
Office of the Lieutenant Governor                                  Mississippi Sheriff’s Association
Office of the Attorney General                                     Harrison County Sheriff’s Office
Office of the Speaker of the House                                 Mississippi Police Chief’s Association
State Legislators                                                  Meridian Police Department
Mississippi Department of Transportation                           Mississippi Judicial College
Mississippi Department of Public Safety (including                 Mississippi State University – Social Science Research
Planning and State Patrol)                                         Center
Mississippi Department of Health                                   University of Southern Mississippi
Mississippi Department of Mental Health                            Mississippi Center for Technology Transfer
Mississippi Department of Education                                Mississippi Association of Supervisors
Mississippi Department of Vocational Rehabilitation                County Supervisors
Governor’s Office of Highway Safety                                Mississippi Municipal League
Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction                  Metropolitan Planning Organizations
Federal Highway Administration                                     Mississippi Road Builders Association
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration                     Mississippi Association of Highway Safety Leaders
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration                        Mississippi Emergency Medical Association
Mississippi Trucking Association                                   Mississippi Brain Injury Association
Mothers Against Drunk Driving                                      Mississippi Operation Lifesaver
AAA                                                                Mississippi Safe Kids
American Traffic Safety Services Association                       American Academy of Pediatrics




January 2007                                                                                                           2-5
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

Participants in attendance also represented national agencies (i.e., FHWA, FMCSA, and
NHTSA) as well as Metropolitan Planning Organizations, Emergency Medical Association,
Sheriff’s Association, Police Chief’s Association, county supervisors, AAA, MADD, and the
Office of State Aid Road Construction.
The Safety Summit included (see Figure 2.1 for agenda) a presentation of the results of the
analysis of fatalities and the outcome of the self-assessment exercise. Following these
presentations, the Safety Partners broke into small groups to discuss adoption of a new
Mission/Vision/Goal for Mississippi’s safety program and the screening of the emphasis areas
(see Figure 2.2). The Summit culminated with the Safety Partners participating in a
prioritization exercise. The results of that prioritization exercise identified the following Top
Ten ranking Emphasis Areas:
    1. Reducing impaired driving                        7. Provide “overall” enforcement
    2. Increasing seat belt usage                           (added by one of the focus groups)
    3. Keeping vehicles on the roadway                  8. Enhancing EMS to increase
    4. Enhancing graduated licensing for                    survivability
       young drivers                                    9. Improving the design and operation
    5. Curbing aggressive driving                           of highway intersections
    6. Improving information and                        10. Increasing driver safety awareness
       decision support systems




                                                                    FIGURE 2.1
                                                                    Agenda for July 26 Safety
                                                                    Summit



January 2007                                                                                    2-6
                      Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan




                                                                          AASHTO’s 22 Key
                                                                          Emphasis Areas
                                                                          in the SHSP




FIGURE 2.2
Mississippi Critical Emphasis Area Screening Process

Following the Safety Summit, the executive and steering committees for the development of this
SHSP (senior staff representing MDOT, MDPS, FHWA, FMCSA and NHSTA) decided to focus
Mississippi’s safety efforts on the top five emphasis areas – the Critical Emphasis Areas for
Mississippi are:
     1. Reduce impaired driving
     2. Increase seat belt usage
     3. Prevent or reduce the severity of lane departure crashes (includes (1) keeping
        vehicles on the roadway, (2) minimizing consequences of leaving the road, and (3)
        reducing head-on and across-median crashes)
     4. Reduce the over involvement of young drivers
     5. Curb aggressive driving
In addition to having the support of the Mississippi safety partners, the CEAs account for a
large fraction of traffic fatalities in Mississippi (see Figure 2.2) and have links with many of the
needs identified in the Mississippi safety self-assessment.




January 2007                                                                                     2-7
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

2.4 Mission, Vision, and Goal
In addition to assisting with the prioritization of the CEAs, participants at the July 26 summit
also provided input into the development of the Mission, Vision, and Goal for the Mississippi
SHSP. This input resulted in selecting the following Mission and Vision for the Mississippi
SHSP.




                                     Mission
            Save lives and reduce injuries by using partnerships to coordinate and
      integrate education, enforcement, engineering, and emergency response initiatives.


                                        Vision
                      All roadway users arrive safely at their destinations.


                                          Goal
                     Reduce the number of traffic fatalities from the current
                       number of 931 fatalities in 2005 to 700 by 2011



The national highway safety goal is to reduce the national fatality rate by 33%; from 1.5 fatalities
per 100 million vehicle miles [MVM] in 2003 to 1.0 fatalities per 100 MVM by 2008 (see Figure
1.3). Achieving this goal is expected to reduce the annual traffic fatalities by 5,000 to 7,000.
Recent figures demonstrate the significant challenge associated with achieving this rate by 2008
(the reported 2004 fatality rate is 1.44 fatalities per 100 MVM and the number of deaths
increased to 43,443; the highest number since 1990), but it is essential to continue to attempt to
reduce the number of fatalities. A necessary part of the goal to reduce the national fatality rate
is that each individual state does its part to help.
Identifying a statewide safety goal is also an important element to a SHSP since it helps
agencies measure their actual progress against a stretch, but attainable, safety goal. In order to
provide enough time to implement strategies and programs, the year 2011 was selected as the
timeframe. Several options for a safety goal were discussed at the summit on July 26, 2006.
Following the summit, the executive and steering committees discussed the options and
adopted as a safety goal to reduce the number of traffic fatalities from the current number of 931
fatalities in 2005 to 700 by 2011 (see Figure 2.3).




January 2007                                                                                     2-8
                             Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

                                                               Reduce the number of
                                                               traffic fatalities from the   ˜ 1,000       Based on trends
                                                               current number of                           from crash data
                                                               approximately 900 per year                  dating back to
                                                      880      to fewer than 700 per year                  1990.

                                         All Others            by 2011.
                                    Heavy Vehicles
                                     Older Drivers
                        Head-On and Across Median                                            ˜ 700
                                    Young Drivers
       Emphasis Areas




                                Aggressive Driving

                                      Intersections

                                 Impaired Driving             Implementation
                              Keeping Drivers Alert
                                                               of Mitigation
                                                                 Strategies
                                 Ran-Off the Road




                                          Unbelted



                                                  2000-2004
                                                                                             2011
                                                   Average

     FIGURE 2.3
     Illustration of How Mississippi’s Fatalities Stack Up and the Needed Reduction to Meet the 2011 Safety Goal
     Note: CEAs are highlighted in bold text


2.5 Review of Fatal Crash Data for the CEAs
Before the August 30, 2006, Safety Summit 4: Identification of Critical Strategies Workshop,
crash records from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (2000-2004) were reviewed and
summarized into fact sheets, which were then used by the participants to help identify major
patterns or contributing factors when prioritizing the related strategies. A copy of these fact
sheets has been provided in Appendix A. In addition, a summary of the key findings for each
CEA identified during the crash review are provided below.
Reducing Impaired Driving
•   Alcohol-related fatalities were more likely in rural areas (77%).
•   Most fatalities occurred on local roads (43%) with another 30% on State Highways.
•   Single vehicle run-off the road crashes accounted for 62% of all alcohol-related fatalities.
•   Of drinking and drunk drivers; 11% were under the age of 21, 85% were male, and 77%
    were unbelted at the time of the crash.



January 2007                                                                                                                 2-9
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

•   Most alcohol-related fatalities occurred between 6:00 PM and 3:00 AM (61%) and 65% of
    alcohol-related fatalities occurred on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday.
Increasing Seat Belt Usage
•   78% of unbelted vehicle occupant fatalities occurred on rural roads.
•   43% of unbelted fatalities were located on local roads followed by State Highways with 29%.
•   The most common crash type in which an unbelted fatality occurred was a single vehicle
    run-off-the-road crash (58%) followed by head-on collision (18%).
•   Males accounted for 70% of unbelted fatalities and 18% of the vehicle occupants killed were
    between the ages of 14 and 20.
•   Over half of the unbelted fatalities occurred on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
•   Of vehicle occupant fatalities, unbelted vehicle occupants accounted for 71% of all deaths.
    However, the vehicle occupants not wearing safety belts and involved in the fatal crashes
    accounted for only 50% of the injured occupants and 35% of the uninjured vehicle
    occupants.
Preventing or Reducing the Severity of Lane Departure Crashes
•   There was a total of 2,959 fatalities from lane departure crashes, which is comprised of 2,142
    fatalities from single vehicle run-off the road crashes, 794 fatalities from head-on crashes,
    and 23 fatalities from sideswipe (opposite direction) crashes.
•   79% of lane departure fatalities happened on rural roads.
•   44% of fatalities occurred on local roads with 30% of fatalities on State Highways.
•   Alcohol involvement was reported in 28% of lane departure fatalities and 75% of the vehicle
    occupant fatalities were individuals not wearing seat belts.
•   Of the drivers involved in a fatal lane departure crash, 75% were male and 16% were at
    most 20 years old.
•   Friday, Saturday, and Sunday accounted for 51% of lane departure fatalities.
Reducing the Over Involvement of Young Drivers
•   78% of fatalities involving young drivers occurred on rural roads.
•   45% of fatalities were on local roads followed by State Highways with 32%.
•   The most common crash type involving a young driver was single vehicle run-off-the-road
    crash (44%) followed head-on collisions (22%) and right angle collision (31%).
•   Males accounted for 70% of young drivers involved in a fatal crash; 13% of young drivers
    were tested for alcohol and found to have been drinking or were drunk; and 63% of the
    young drivers were unbelted.
•   54% of the fatalities involving a young driver occurred on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
•   28% of fatalities involving a young driver occurred between 9:00 PM and 3:00 AM.
Curbing Aggressive Driving
•   83% of fatalities involving aggressive drivers occurred on rural roads.
•   50% of fatalities were on local roads followed by State Highways with 26%.
•   The most common crash type involving an aggressive driver was single vehicle run-off-the-
    road crash (89%).


January 2007                                                                                  2-10
                   Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

•   Males accounted for 76% of aggressive drivers involved in a fatal crash; 32% of aggressive
    drivers were tested for alcohol and found to have been drinking or were drunk; and 74% of
    the aggressive drivers were unbelted.
•   19% of aggressive drivers involved in a fatal crash had a previous speeding conviction.
•   54% of the fatalities involving an aggressive driver occurred on Friday, Saturday and
    Sunday.
•   30% of fatalities involving an aggressive driver occurred between 9:00 PM and 3:00 AM.
Note: Aggressive driving encompasses many types of driver behavior. However, the crash records information
presented is focused on speeding-related crashes only.




January 2007                                                                                         2-11
                     Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

3. Critical Safety Strategies
3.1 Prioritization
Following the confirmation of the Critical Emphasis Areas (CEAs), the next step consisted of
identifying Mississippi’s Critical Strategies. The Critical Strategies are a sub-set of all possible
safety strategies that are expected to effectively address the primary contributing factors leading
to fatalities in the CEAs and address the Four E’s (education, enforcement, engineering, and
EMS).
A multi-step process was used in the selection of the critical strategies. This process began by
identifying an extensive list of strategies for each emphasis area based on the NCHRP Report 500
series. The specific guides that were used to identify the possible strategies are listed in Table
3.1. In addition to the NCHRP series, the initial list included some strategies that had been
previously identified in safety plans through FHWA’s Lead State Initiative and previously
published SHSPs.

               TABLE 3.1
               Primary Source for Initial Strategies Discussed at Safety Summit
               NCHRP Report 500 Series

               Volume         Title

               Reducing Impaired Driving

               16             A Guide for Reducing Alcohol-Related Collisions

               Increasing Seat Belt Usage

               11             A Guide for Increasing Seatbelt Use

               Preventing or Reducing the Severity of Lane Departure Crashes

               3              A Guide for Addressing Collisions with Trees in Hazardous Locations

               4              A Guide for Addressing Head-On Collisions

               6              A Guide for Addressing Run-Off-Road Collisions

               7              A Guide for Reducing Collisions on Horizontal Curves

               8              A Guide for Reducing Collisions Involving Utility Poles

               Reducing the Over Involvement of Young Drivers

                     Draft copy of the Young Driver guide; to be published by 2007

               Curbing Aggressive Driving

               1              A Guide for Addressing Aggressive-Driving Collisions




January 2007                                                                                        3-1
                      Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

These NCHRP reports were selected as the starting point for the development of Mississippi’s
strategies because a great deal of effort at the national level has gone into identifying a universe
of potential safety strategies along with providing valuable information documenting whether
individual strategies are proven, tried or experimental, implementation costs and expected
effectiveness ratios. By starting with this information, each state’s efforts can then be focused
on prioritizing the strategies that are most directly focused on the factors contributing to their
crashes, as opposed to generating an initial list of strategies.
On August 30, 2006, Safety Summit 4: Identification of Critical Strategies Workshop was
conducted with Mississippi’s safety partners (see Table 3.2). The purpose of the safety
workshop was to review and prioritize the strategies associated with each of the CEAs (see
Figure 3.1). The safety workshop was organized so that multi-disciplinary small groups were
created to discuss, revise and prioritize the list of strategies for a specific CEA (Figure 3.2). One
of the strengths of the workshop was the diversity of different agencies and organizations that
participated in the summit, providing a truly comprehensive “4 E” look at the strategies.

TABLE 3.2
Mississippi Safety Partners – August 30 Safety Summit Participants
Office of the Attorney General                                   Hinds County Sheriff’s Office

Mississippi Department of Transportation                         Warren County Sheriff’s Office

Mississippi Department of Public Safety (including               Panola County Sheriff’s Office
Planning and State Patrol)

Mississippi Department of Health                                 Meridian Police Department

Mississippi Department of Mental Health                          Pearl Police Department

Governor’s Office of Highway Safety                              Oxford Police Department

Mississippi Office of State Aid Road Construction                Mississippi Safe Kids

Central Mississippi Planning and Development District            American Academy of Pediatrics

Federal Highway Administration                                   City of Ridgeland

Mississippi Trucking Association                                 City of Jackson

Mississippi Road Builders Association                            Panola County Road Department

American Traffic Safety Services Association                     Harrison County Road Department

Mississippi Center for Technology Transfer                       AAA Ambulance Service

Mississippi State University – Center for Advanced               Mississippi State University – Social Science Research
Vehicular Systems                                                Center


The workshop employed a data driven process since each participant was provided information
on the expected effectiveness, implementation cost, and implementation timeframe for all
strategies discussed by the task team. Further, participants were given a fact sheet that
summarized the characteristics of fatalities associated with their CEA (see Appendix A). Task
teams were allowed to modify the list of strategies to add, delete, rewrite, or combine strategies
if considered appropriate for Mississippi.



January 2007                                                                                                         3-2
                  Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan




                                                                   FIGURE 3.1
                                                                   Agenda for August 30 Safety Summit

Each task team ranked the list of strategies for their CEA as high, medium, or low (the edited
list of all strategies with rankings is provided in Appendix B). The ranking given to the
strategies reflect the task teams’ assessment of the relative importance and ability of each
strategy to address the major factors contributing to traffic fatalities in Mississippi. Finally, all
participants listened to brief presentations from each of the task team leaders regarding the
basis for the selection of the high priority strategies followed by a prioritization exercise
involving all summit participants.
One of the key products from the Strategies Workshop includes a list of forty-nine high priority
strategies as well as stakeholder input. The voting exercise involved all Workshop participants
and further screened the Safety Strategies. The strategies that received the most votes include
(in descending order):
   1.   Graduated driver license
   2.   Mandatory suspension for alcohol violation for underage
   3.   Automated Enforcement
   4.   Better pavement markings
   5.   Shoulder treatments
   6.   Unbelted Enforcement Campaign
   7.   Seize vehicle/plates – issue Repeat Offender (DUI) Plates
   8.   Remove/relocate objects



January 2007                                                                                            3-3
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

   9. Sanctions       against      repeat
       offenders
   10. Public education for populations
       with low seat belt usage rates
   11. Publicize and enforce zero
       tolerance for underage drivers
   12. Additional training for judges
   13. PI&E campaign for aggressive
       drivers
This list of safety strategies reflects the
professional opinions of the Workshop
participants,        indicating      where
Mississippi should invest its safety
resources in order to reduce the number
of traffic fatalities and life threatening
(Type A) injuries.




                                              FIGURE 3.2
                                              General Session (top) and Multi-Disciplinary Groups (bottom)



3.2 Selection of Critical Strategies
Immediately following the Safety Workshop, the executive and steering committees identified
the top strategies that Mississippi will focus on to achieve its 2011 safety goal. This select group
of strategies is designated as the Critical Strategies.
The process to identify the Critical Strategies was a multi-step process (see Figure 3.3) that first
began with the results of the Workshop prioritization exercise. This information acted as a
guide for the SHSP management team based on the safety partners’ recommendations
regarding how resources should be invested and allocated. The steering committee also chose
to add strategies in the area of EMS since none came out of the screening process used at the
Safety Summit.




January 2007                                                                                                 3-4
                       Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

                                                     A summary of the 13 Critical Strategies
                                                     organized by the Safety Es is provided in
                                                     Figure 3.4 with a full description of the
                                                     strategies organized by the CEAs in Table
                                                     3.3.    Figure 3.5 contains examples of
                                                     Strategies that have been deployed in other
                                                     states.
                                                     The purpose of the Critical Strategies is to
                                                     identify the strategies that will supplement
                                                     existing safety programs, to provide a
                                                     coordinated      multi-agency       focus   for
                                                     Mississippi’s safety initiatives, and to
                                                     provide the necessary focus on components
                                                     of an implementation plan that will
                                                     ultimately allow Mississippi to be successful
                                                     in achieving the safety goal. The completion
  FIGURE 3.3                                         of this SHSP also demonstrates Mississippi’s
  Critical Strategies Identification Process         commitment         to      the     cooperation,
                                                     communication and coordination necessary
to implement the Critical Strategies – the key to reducing fatalities and life threatening (Type A)
injuries in Mississippi.


 Enforcement                                     Engineering
   Enact a comprehensive GDL and                   Help drivers maintain their lane with
   enhance driver education                        enhanced pavement markings and
   Enforce zero tolerance laws to reduce           longitudinal rumble strips
   underage drinking and driving                   Improve shoulders to assist drivers
   Use automated enforcement for                   with recovery
   speeding and red light running                  Improve roadside safety by removing
   Highly publicized seat belt                     or relocating objects and shielding
   enforcement campaigns combined                  fixed objects
   with public education
   Seize License plates for DUI offenses
   Use highly publicized DUI                     Education
   checkpoints or saturation patrols               Provide Courts education and training
                                                   regarding issues on impaired driving
 EMS                                               and young drivers
  Funding for Statewide Trauma System              Target aggressive drivers with public
  Reduce EMS response time (arrival on             information and education campaigns
   scene to arrival at hospital)
  Training for first responders and trauma
   center staff

FIGURE 3.4
Summary of Mississippi’s Critical Strategies




January 2007                                                                                     3-5
                      Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan




FIGURE 3.5
Deployed Strategies in Other States


3.3 What’s Next
Part I of the Mississippi SHSP identifies the process, participants, prioritization and selection of
the Critical Emphasis Areas and Critical Strategies.
Part II will contain a plan summary for each of the Critical Strategies and an analysis of safety
investment scenarios. The plan summaries will contain information such as expected
effectiveness, costs, keys to success, legislative needs, and identification of the state agency that
will take on the responsibility for implementation, all of which will be necessary information
when beginning the program planning and implementation.
In addition, Part II will contain a deployment plan for the Critical Strategies that analyzes
several statewide investment scenarios. The purpose of the investment analysis is to identify the
sub-set of the Critical Strategies that are most directly linked to serious crashes and therefore
represent the highest probability of achieving the adopted safety goal. The key performance
measure in this analysis is the expected number of fatal crashes prevented and lives saved.
Finally, the outcome of this analysis will present proof that achieving the safety goal is in fact
feasible.
This information will be used by implementation task teams for their mission. For each CEA, a
multi-agency committee will be formed to promote statewide partnerships and coordinate
implementation. The membership of the teams will be comprised of volunteers from the
participants at the workshop on August 30, 2006 and other safety partners from across the state.
The teams will guide the implementation, evaluation, and refinement of the Mississippi
Strategic Highway Safety Plan. The goal in forming the teams is to build partnerships across
agencies and safety advocacy groups. Additionally, membership on the teams will be multi-
disciplinary to ensure a comprehensive approach is taken to reduce the number of fatalities and
life threatening (Type A) crashes.



January 2007                                                                                      3-6
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

The mission of the teams consists of two key components. First, the teams will help develop
programs and projects consistent with the Critical Strategies identified in this Plan. Second, the
teams will participate in periodic evaluations and any necessary refinement to the SHSP.
The teams and champions for each of the strategies will be established during the next Phase of
the SHSP, and will be an integral part in developing the action plans for each of the critical
strategies. The teams will be organized around a chair person that is an employee of one of the
State agency partners in the preparation of the SHSP: the Mississippi Departments of
Transportation, Public Safety or Health. In order to provide the necessary measure of
accountability, the chair-persons of the teams will report to the co-project managers (at MDOT
and MDPS) for the development and implementation of the SHSP.




January 2007                                                                                   3-7
                                              Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

TABLE 3.3
Mississippi SHSP Critical Strategies
                                                                                                                Relative Cost                   Typical Timeframe
       Objective                                                Strategy                                                        Effectiveness
                                                                                                                to Implement                    for Implementation
Impaired Driving Strategies
                            Reduce underage drinking and driving by (1) publicizing and enforcing zero
                                                                                                                 Moderate to
                            tolerance laws for drivers under the age of 21 and (2) enacting a mandatory                            Proven          Short (<1 yr.)
                                                                                                                   High
Enforce DUI Laws            driver’s license suspension for any alcohol violation for underage drivers.
                            Utilize highly publicized DUI checkpoints or regular conducted saturation            Moderate to
                                                                                                                                Proven/Tried       Short (<1 yr.)
                            patrols that are coordinated throughout the state.                                     High
                            For impaired drivers, seize vehicle license plates administratively upon
Control High BAC and
                            arrest. Reissue special DUI plates that allow officers to identify drivers with a     Moderate         Proven        Medium (1-2 yrs.)
Repeat Offenders
                            previous conviction.
Unbelted Vehicle Occupant Strategies
Maximize use of             Conduct highly publicized enforcement campaigns to maximize restraint use.
                                                                                                                 Moderate to                      Short (<1 yr.) to
occupant restraints by      Provide enhanced public education to population groups with lower than                                 Proven
                                                                                                                   High                          Medium (1-2 yrs.)
all vehicle occupants       average restraint use rates.
Lane Departure Strategies
                            Utilize cost effective treatments to help drivers maintain their lane. Such
                            treatments may include installing: profiled thermoplastic strips, raised
                            pavement markers, shoulder rumble strips, edgeline rumble strips or modified                           Tried/         Short (<1 yr.) to
                                                                                                                    Low
                            shoulder rumble strips on section with narrow or no paved shoulders, or                             Experimental     Medium (1-2 yrs.)
Keep vehicles from          wider markings (i.e., 6” or 8” wide as opposed to 4” wide). Use treatments for
encroaching into the        edge lines and centerlines when appropriate.
opposite lane or on the
roadside                    To help a driver maintain control of their vehicle if they leave the travel lane
                            and get on the shoulder, then eliminate shoulder drop-off by paving
                                                                                                                                   Tried/         Short (<1 yr.) to
                            shoulders, widening substandard shoulders, or maintenance of gravel                     Low
                                                                                                                                Experimental     Medium (1-2 yrs.)
                            shoulders. Assist drivers with safely transitioning from the shoulder back to
                            the travel lane by constructing a beveled edge (a.k.a. safety edge).
Minimize the likelihood
                            Remove/relocate objects, such as trees, utility poles, light poles, and etc., in
of crashing into an
                            hazardous locations (i.e., provide adequate clear zones). Reduce the
object if the vehicle
                            severity of a run-off the road crash by using breakaway devices, extending             Low to
travels beyond the                                                                                                                 Proven          Short (<1 yr.)
                            clear zones, shielding drivers from fixed objects, and                                Moderate
edge of the shoulder &
                            inventory/improve/update/maintain existing guardrails, end treatments, and
minimize the crash
                            attenuation systems.
severity




January 2007                                                                                                                                                        3-8
                                              Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

TABLE 3.3
Mississippi SHSP Critical Strategies
                                                                                                             Relative Cost                   Typical Timeframe
       Objective                                               Strategy                                                      Effectiveness
                                                                                                             to Implement                    for Implementation
Young Driver Strategies
                            Enact a comprehensive graduated licensing system for young drivers.
                            Example restrictions may include (1) requiring at least 6 months of
                            supervised driving for beginners starting at age 16, (2) implementing a night
Implement or improve        driving restriction that begins at 9:00 PM, (3) implementing a passenger
graduated driver            restriction that allows only one unrelated, young passenger, and (3)
                            prohibiting cell phone use while driving.                                                          Proven/        Medium (1-2 yrs.)
licensing (GDL)                                                                                               Low to High
                                                                                                                             Experimental     to Long (>2 yrs.)
systems and driver          Improve content and delivery of driver education/training by first making sure
training                    there is a link between content of the driver training manual & documented
                            crash causation factors for young drivers; and second by training and
                            educating roadway users to safely recover if on the shoulder and understand
                            the dangers of speeding and risk-taking behavior.
                            Work with the Courts to educate them on the importance of prosecuting
                                                                                                                                               Short (<1 yr.) to
Educate the Courts          citations given for impaired driving or to young drivers. This could include       Moderate      Experimental
                                                                                                                                              Medium (1-2 yrs.)
                            training judges and prosecutors on the effects of alcohol.
Aggressive Driver Strategies
Deter aggressive            Implement automated enforcement (i.e., cameras) of red light running and
                                                                                                               Moderate      Proven/Tried     Medium (1-2 yrs.)
driving in specific         vehicle speeds.
populations, including
those with a history of     Conduct educational and public information campaigns. This may include an           Low to          Tried/         Short (<1 yr.) to
such behavior, and at       emphasis on educating and imposing sanctions against repeat offenders.             Moderate      Experimental     Medium (1-2 yrs.)
specific locations
EMS
                            Increase funding of Statewide Trauma System (maintained by the Mississippi
                                                                                                               Moderate          Tried          Short (<1 yr.)
                            Department of Health).
Improve capabilities of
emergency service                                                                                             Moderate to
                            Reduce EMS response time from arrival at site to arrival at medical facility.                       Proven         Long (>2 yrs.)
providers                                                                                                        High
                                                                                                                Low to                         Short (<1 yr.) to
                            Provide additional training for first responders and trauma center staff.                            Tried
                                                                                                               Moderate                       Medium (1-2 yrs.)




January 2007                                                                                                                                                     3-9
                 Mississippi Strategic Highway Safety Plan

References
1. http://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov/
2. Information from NHTSA’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System.
3. AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan: A Comprehensive Plan to Substantially Reduce Vehicle-
   Related Fatalities and Injuries on the Nation’s Highways. American Association of State
   Highway and Transportation Officials, Washington, D.C., 1998.
4. National Cooperative Highway Research Program Report 500: Guidance for Implementation of the
   AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan. Series published by TRB, National Research
   Council, Washington, D.C.
5. Bahar, G., M. Maslian, C. Mollett, and B. Persaud. National Cooperative Highway Research
   Program Report 501: Integrated Safety Management Process. TRB, National Research Council,
   Washington, D.C., 2003.
6. Strategic Highway Safety Plans: A Champion’s Guide to Saving Lives. Guidance to Supplement
   SAFETEA-LU Requirements. Federal Highway Administration, Washington, D.C., April 5,
   2006.




January 2007                                                                                  R-1