The National Academies

NCHRP 17-38 [Completed]

Highway Safety Manual Implementation and Training Materials

  Project Data
Funds: $485,799
Research Agency: Oregon State University
Principal Investigator: Dr. Karen K. Dixon
Effective Date: 6/25/2008
Completion Date: 12/30/2011

NCHRP Project 17-36, Production of the First Edition of the Highway Safety Manual, produced the first edition of the Highway Safety Manual (HSM) and NCHRP Research Results Digest 329, Highway Safety Manual Data Needs Guide, which is intended to help potential users of the first edition anticipate the data needs for using the HSM.  It serves the same role for safety analyses that the Highway Capacity Manual (HCM) currently serves for traffic operational analyses. The purpose of the HSM is to provide the best information and tools to facilitate roadway planning, design, operations, and maintenance decisions based on explicit consideration of their safety consequences.
The emphasis of the HSM is on the development of quantitative tools addressing two-lane highways, rural multilane highways, and urban and suburban arterials. In addition, the HSM presents a summary of knowledge on the safety effects of various roadway designs and operations in a form that users can readily apply. It also describes effective techniques for safety management of a roadway system and presents state-of-the-art approaches to evaluation of the safety effectiveness of implemented projects.
While the first edition of the HSM has been published, an important effort is needed to assure that the HSM is effectively implemented. This will require guidance for highway-agency management on the appropriate application of the HSM, as well as training for engineers and planners on using the HSM. The HSM provides a major opportunity for advancing the state of practice of highway safety. Briefing and training materials and a recommend training plan to be coordinated with the release of the first edition of the HSM are needed.
The objectives of this project are to develop: (1) briefing materials for presentation to AASHTO Committees; (2) “generic” presentation materials (not to exceed 1 hour) to brief a variety of organizations such as the American Public Works Association (APWA), Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), Association of Metropolitian Planning Organizations/National Association of Regional Councils (AMPO/NARC), National Association of County Engineers (NACE), Local Technical Assistance Program (LTAP), etc; and (3) an overview training course for state DOTs for use on a state-by-state basis.
Accomplishment of the project objectives will require at least the following tasks.
Briefings  (1.) Develop content outlines for briefing AASHTO committees on the HSM. Briefings for the following committees shall be developed: Standing Committees on Highways, Highway Traffic Safety, and Planning, as well as Highway Subcommittees on Traffic Engineering and Design.  (2.) Recommend the length(s) and delivery method(s) for the briefings to best meet the needs of the various audiences.  (3.) Develop the HSM briefing materials for the specific audiences identified in Task 1.  The material shall include speaker notes.  (4.) Present a briefing to the NCHRP 17-38 Panel, key AASHTO members, and others identified by NCHRP. Modify materials based on ensuing discussion and comments.  (5.) Plan for and conduct up to 5 briefings for key AASHTO committees as directed by NCHRP.  (6.) Develop a “generic” presentation with speaker notes (not to exceed 1 hour) that can be used for briefings for a variety of organizations such as APWA, ITE, AMPO/NARC, NACE, and LTAP to include information on other more detailed training and briefing materials that are available.
Overview Training Course  (7.) Develop learning objectives and course outline. (8.) Recommend the length and delivery method for the course to best meet the needs of the various audiences.  (9.) Develop one full module, including exercises using Instructional System Development (ISD) procedures for review and approval by the NCHRP.  (10.) Develop the course materials using ISD procedures. The materials will be designed according to National Highway Institute standards – including notably adult learning approaches for conveying the information.  The materials shall include, as possible, examples from different states and how they are currently using the HSM-like methodologies (e.g., prediction equations).   (11.) Present a draft version of the course materials to a joint working session of the NCHRP Panel, selected members of the TRB HSM Task Force, and AASHTO representatives for detailed review and critique. Modify course materials as necessary.  (12.) Conduct three multi-state pilot course presentations for state DOTs – aligned with each FHWA region.  Conduct an evaluation of the pilots and modify materials as necessary after each pilot.  (13.) Develop a set of supplementary materials for “training the trainer” sessions including instructor notes.  (14.) Propose training activities and identify implementation issues that go beyond the proposed project (i.e., identify other specific, detailed, and targeted training courses that should be considered for development).
Final Deliverables  (15.) Submit a final report documenting the entire research effort. The final report shall describe how the project was conducted and include as appendices all briefing and teaching materials.

Status: This project is complete and was published as NCHRP Report 715, Highway Safety Manual Training Materials, in May 2012.

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