U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
While most transportation agencies have established traditional safety review procedures, a road safety audit (RSA) or assessment is unique. RSAs are performed by a multidisciplinary team independent of the project. RSAs consider all road users, account for human factors and road user capabilities, are documented in a formal report, and require a formal response from the road owner. (See the eight steps for conducting an RSA below.)
RSAs provide the following benefits:
- Reduced number and severity of crashes due to safer designs.
- Reduced costs resulting from early identification and mitigation of safety issues before projects are built.
- Increased opportunities to integrate multimodal safety strategies and proven safety countermeasures.
- Expanded ability to consider human factors in all facets of design.
- Increased communication and collaboration among safety stakeholders.
- Objective review by independent multidisciplinary team.
RSAs can be performed in any phase of project development, from planning through construction. Agencies may focus RSAs specifically on motorized vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcyclists, or a combination of these roadway users. Agencies are encouraged to conduct an RSA at the earliest stage possible, as all roadway design options and alternatives are being explored.
1. Road Safety Audits: An Evaluation of RSA Programs and Projects, FHWA-SA-12-037; and FHWA Road Safety Audit Guidelines, FHWA-SA-06-06.