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FHWA Highway Safety Programs

Road Safety Audits: Case Studies

fhwasa06017.pdf (1.21 MB)

The photo shows a three-person RSA Team at the side of a two-lane rural roadway.


This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained in this document. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers' names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Quality Assurance Statement

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides high-quality information to serve Government, industry, and the public in a manner that promotes public under-standing. Standards and policies are used to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of its information. FHWA periodically reviews quality issues and adjusts its programs and processes to ensure continuous quality improvement.

Technical Report Documentation Page

1. Report No. FHWA-SA-06-17 2. Government Accession No. 3. Recipient's Catalog No.
4. Title and Subtitle Road Safety Audits: Case Studies 5. Report Date
December 2006
6. Performing Organization Code
7. Authors
Margaret Gibbs; Sany R. Zein; Dan Nabors; Hugh McGee; Kim Eccles
8. Performing Organization Report No.
9. Performing Organization Name and Address 10. Work Unit No.
Opus Hamilton Consultants Ltd
900 – 1199 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, B.C., Canada V6E 3T5
Vanasse Hangen Brustlin Inc
700 – 8300 Boone Boulevard
Vienna, VA 22182-2626
11. Contract or Grant No.
12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address
Office of Safety
Federal Highway Administration
U.S. Department of Transportation
400 Seventh Street SW, HSA-20
Washington, D.C. 20590
13. Type of Report and Period Covered
Final Report
Dec 2004 – April 2006
14. Sponsoring Agency Code
15. Supplementary Notes: The Federal Highway Administration (Office of Safety) sponsored the RSAs reported in this document. The FHWA Office of Safety Contract Task Order Manager was Louisa Ward.
16. Abstract Road Safety Audits (RSAs) are an effective tool for proactively improving the future safety performance of a road project during the planning and design stages, and for identifying safety issues in existing transportation facilities. To demonstrate the effectiveness of RSAs, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Office of Safety sponsored a series of ten RSAs. The aim of these case studies was to demonstrate the usefulness and effectiveness of RSAs for a variety of projects and project stages, and in a variety of agencies throughout the United States. The results of the RSAs have been compiled in this case studies document. Each case study includes photographs, a project description, a summary of key findings, and the lessons learned. The aim of this document is to provide state and local agencies and Tribal governments with examples and advice that can assist them in implementing RSAs in their own jurisdictions.
17. Key Words
Safety, Road Safety Audit
18. Distribution Statement
No restrictions. This document is available to the public through the National Technical Information Service, Springfield, VA 22161.
19. Security Classif. (of this report)
20. Security Classif. (of this page)
21. No. of Pages: 64 22. Price

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72) Reproduction of completed page authorized


Road Safety Audits (RSAs) are an effective tool for proactively improving the future safety performance of a road project during the planning and design stages, and for identifying safety issues in existing transportation facilities. Additional information on RSAs is available on the web at

Information for the case studies reported in this document was gathered during a series of ten RSAs conducted throughout the United States during 2004-2006, involving transportation agencies at the city, county, state, federal, and tribal levels, and examining roadway projects at all stages of design and operation. FHWA and the authors greatly appreciate the cooperation of the following agencies for their willing and enthusiastic participation in the FHWA-sponsored RSA series: Illinois DOT, Oklahoma DOT, Oregon DOT, Wisconsin DOT, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, the City of Cincinnati, the City of Tucson, Clark County (WA), Collier County (FL), and the National Park Service.