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FHWA Highway Safety Programs

Road Safety Fundamentals - HTML Version

Concepts, Strategies, and Practices that Reduce Fatalities and Injuries on the Road

November 2017

photo from the cover of the Road Safety Fundamentals report showing cars on the Massachusetts Turnpike, eastbound, in the vicinity of Massachusetts Avenue

New Web-based Training Opportunity

Road Safety Fundamentals (FHWA-NHI-380124A) is a web-based introductory roadway safety course that covers main concepts included in the Road Safety Fundamentals textbook.

The course is free!

The Road Safety Fundamentals textbook introduces fundamental concepts of road safety. These concepts cover areas such as the nature of road safety issues, human behavior in the road environment, and identifying and solving road safety problems. The goal of this book is to equip the reader with a broad base of knowledge about road safety.

There are two primary audiences for the text book:

  • Practitioners with jobs that address some aspect of roadway safety, particularly in a public agency setting. This is especially relevant for individuals who have been tasked with managing road safety but who do not have formal training in road safety management. In order to show practical applications of each road safety concept, this book contains many examples that demonstrate the concepts in real-world settings.
  • Professors and students in a university setting who use the textbook to explore concepts and practices in roadway safety.

Professionals with a background in engineering, planning, public health, law enforcement, and other disciplines will also benefit from the concepts presented here.

Get Started

This book is divided into five units according to major topics of road safety knowledge. Each unit is divided into multiple chapters that address the primary concepts of the unit. The book is available in PDF (print version) and HTML.

Please send questions and comments about Road Safety Fundamentals to

Road Safety Professional (RSP) 1 Certification

The Road Safety Fundamentals textbook is one of the main reference materials used in Road Safety Professional (RSP) Level 1 and Level 2 certification. Learn more about Road Safety Professional (RSP) Certification.