State Safety Performance Targets
State Safety Performance Target Assessments Now Available for CY2021
FHWA has completed the State safety performance target assessments for calendar year (CY) 2021, which is based on the five-year rolling average for 2017 to 2021. This year represents the fourth cycle of States setting safety performance targets and of FHWA assessing those targets to determine if States either met the target established or made significant progress. A State is determined to have met or made significant progress toward meeting their safety performance targets when at least four out of the five targets are either met or the actual outcome for the target is better than the baseline performance, which is the five-year rolling average for 2015 to 2019.
In CY 2021, only 10 States (19%) met or made significant progress toward meeting their safety performance targets as compared to 21 States (40%) in 2020. Conversely, in CY 2021, 42 States (81%) did not meet or make significant progress toward their safety performance targets as compared to 31 States (60%) in 2020. As provided by statute, States that did not meet or make significant progress will be required to complete and submit a Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) Implementation Plan and use their Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 funding (equal to the HSIP apportionment in FY 2020) only for safety projects. Table 1 below, provides a summary of the States CY 2021 safety performance target assessments results.
The results of the CY 2021 safety performance target assessments are available on FHWA’s Transportation Performance Management (TPM) website. The website provides a glimpse into each State’s safety performance targets, which represent annual performance levels as we all work toward the long-term goal of zero fatalities. The website also displays historical data; projected safety performance targets through 2023; information on how States establish each of their safety performance targets, which is taken verbatim from the State’s HSIP annual report; and a summary of the safety performance target assessment determination results. The website includes the results for the 2018 through 2021 safety performance target assessments.
In comparing the last four safety performance target assessments from 2018 through 2021, there has been a decrease in the number of States that have met or made significant progress toward their safety performance targets. There were 4 States (8%) that have met or made significant progress for all four years and 16 States (31%) that have not met or made significant progress for all four years. There was one States that met or made significant progress for the first time in 2021 and 9 States (17%) that did not meet or make significant progress for the first time in 2021. Table 2 below, provides a comparison summary of the States CY 2018 through CY 2021 safety performance target assessments results.
The TPM website also includes a link on each State page to download all of the State data in one file. It is important to note; however, that each State uses their own State-specific methodology when establishing annual safety performance targets. For this reason, it is difficult to draw conclusions about a State’s safety program based solely on the assessment data, as it does not reflect each State’s unique approach. For example, some States may have set aggressive targets and did not meet those targets, while other States may have set more attainable targets and met those targets.
In 2021, 42,939 people died in motor vehicle crashes on our nation's roadways. In 2020 and 2021, the nation experienced a 7.3 percent and 10.1 percent increase in fatalities, respectively. This increase in fatalities is a crisis. The 10 percent fatality increase from 2020 to 2021 is the highest year-to-year percentage increase since the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) started data collection in 1975. The 2021 fatality rate per 100 million VMT is 1.37, which is up from 1.34 in 2020. Programming for road safety should be viewed in both the context of these State performance results as well as in the broader context of this recent, dramatic, unacceptable, and preventable rise in fatalities. While updated State-by-State performance data for CY 2022 will not be available until 2024, NHTSA’s recently released Early Estimate of Motor Vehicle Traffic Fatalities in 2022 provides another grim reminder of the toll of roadway fatalities. An estimated 42,795 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2022, which is a marginal decrease of about 0.3 percent from the previous year.
FHWA believes that all of us—FHWA, State transportation departments and other State, local and community partners, stakeholders and the public—are in a position to make a difference in the weeks, months and years to come to bend the curve toward zero fatalities and serious injuries. In light of the recent dramatic increase in fatalities and these safety performance results, FHWA will redouble efforts with our State transportation department partners. Together we will assess how best to set and meet achievable, aggressive safety performance targets; update or prepare Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) Implementation Plans and/or Strategic Highway Safety Plans; use HSIP funds wisely while also making safety the number one priority for all Federal-aid funded road and bridge projects; undertake speed management activities including setting appropriate speed limits that address the safety of all roadway users; and design, build and maintain roads to make them safe for all users. The traveling public’s actions—as a motorist, a passenger or someone walking, biking or rolling—should always prioritize safety first.
Safety is U.S. DOT’s top priority, and as part of the National Roadway Safety Strategy, the Department outlines a comprehensive approach to significantly reducing serious injuries and deaths of all road users on our Nation’s highways, roads, and streets. FHWA shares the vision that zero fatalities on our Nation’s roadways is the only acceptable goal. FHWA also recognizes that reaching zero fatalities will require significant effort by everyone through a wholistic Safe System approach. The State’s annual safety performance targets represent an important step in helping States work toward the ultimate goal of eliminating traffic deaths and serious injuries on our Nation’s roadways.
Directions: Click on a State to view their safety performance targets and target assessment summary.
STATES MEETING OR MAKING
|STATES NOT MEETING OR MAKING
|District of Columbia||X||X|
An 'X' indicates that the State did not meet or make significant progress and a 'blank' indicates that the State did meet or made significant progress.