The National Academies

BTSCRP BTS-17 [Active]

Determining the Effectiveness of Combined High Visibility Enforcement

  Project Data
Funds: $300,000
Staff Responsibility: Richard Retting
Research Agency: Iowa State University
Principal Investigator: Shauna Hallmark
Effective Date: 11/1/2021
Completion Date: 11/1/2023
Comments: Research underway


The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) as a universal traffic safety approach designed to create deterrence and change unlawful traffic behaviors. HVE combines highly visible and proactive law enforcement targeting a specific traffic safety issue. Law enforcement efforts are combined with visibility elements and a publicity strategy to educate the public and promote voluntary compliance with the law. NHTSA has funded several evaluations of combined enforcement programs with mixed results.

The State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs), in conjunction with their state highway patrols and local law enforcement agencies, conduct multiple HVE campaigns throughout the year as countermeasures to road user crashes caused by impaired driving, lack of seat belt use, distracted driving, and speeding. These annual multiple campaigns are labor intensive for law enforcement agencies, and there are concerns about their effectiveness.
If research could demonstrate through evidence-based data that combined enforcement efforts are indeed effective, this would have positive resource impacts     on SHSOs and their law enforcement partners.


The goal of this research is to develop a scalable evaluation framework and methodologies to determine the effectiveness of High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) campaigns to reduce crash frequency and severity involving road user behaviors such as impaired driving, lack of seat belt use, distracted driving, and speeding. To accomplish this goal, the project includes the following research objectives:  

Develop products to facilitate outreach of project outcomes;

Develop and assess evaluation frameworks suitable to evaluate the effectiveness of HVE campaigns;

and Identify agency practices and approaches for detecting road user behaviors to target HVE campaigns.

Identify methods used by agencies to measures the effectiveness of HVE campaigns;

To create a link to this page, use this URL: http://apps.trb.org/cmsfeed/TRBNetProjectDisplay.asp?ProjectID=5018