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United States Department of Transportation United States Department of Transportation
OFFICE OF RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, AND TECHNOLOGY AT THE TURNER-FAIRBANK HIGHWAY RESEARCH CENTER

Speed Management

Speed management is an approach to balance the safety and mobility of all road users by setting appropriate speed limits that reduces and/or mitigates speeding, and the impact of speeding-related crashes. Reduced speeds will decrease fuel consumption, lower greenhouse gas emissions, decrease traffic noise, and lead walkable communities which ultimately improve the quality of life. However, speed is a complex subject because it is included not only engineering factors, but also preference-based behaviors that vary across individuals and group of stakeholders. As a result, a significant aspect of speed management research is to investigate how motorists arrive at that decision.

Speed management research includes, but not limited to, defining the relationship between speed, speeding, and safety; road design elements and applying engineering countermeasures to obtain appropriate speeds; setting speed limits that are rational, safe and reasonable; using enforcement and appropriate technologies to address and deter speeding, and the behavior and motivations of speeding drivers.

Current work includes an update of the United States Department of Transportation’s 2008 Speed Enforcement Camera Systems Operational Guidelines. The updated guide restructures chapters to emphasize planning, policy, communications, and organizational concerns, highlighting policy and programmatic decisions to ensure a program that is operated transparently, legally, equitably, and focused on safety. The guide places greater emphasis on Speed Safety Camera (SSC) as a component of a comprehensive speed management program that involves multiple stakeholders. The guide incorporates updated research and case examples, including information on new technologies, such as point-to-point, or speed-over-distance enforcement being used internationally. In addition, the guide provides four new case examples on how specific jurisdictions in the United States are implementing programs or working to address barriers to implement and sustain SSC programs.

Last updated: Thursday, August 26, 2021