Virginia's Safety Plan is being updated.
- Reaching a goal of zero deaths and serious injuries is not as impossible as it may sound.
It is the same goal we set for ourselves, our families, and our friends every time we drive, walk, or ride.
The Arrive Alive Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) is a five-year, action-based plan to reach zero deaths and serious injuries on Virginia’s transportation system.
Your ideas on actions to reduce severe crashes on our roadways are needed to chart our course towards zero. Please click here to take our survey and provide input on the state of traffic safety in the Commonwealth.
Please click here to register for a virtual meeting to learn about the SHSP update for the 2022-2026 period, highway safety issues in your region, and to review and provide input on strategies and actions that will be implemented to reduce fatalities and serious injuries on Virginia’s roadways. Virtual meetings will be held in the five Virginia Regional (see map) areas (note that the full three hours may not be needed):
– Southwestern – September 14th, 2021 from 2-5 p.m.
– Northwestern – September 15th, 2021 from 2-5 p.m.
– Eastern – September 17th, 2021 from 9 a.m.-Noon
– Central – September 20th, 2021 from 9 a.m.-Noon
– Northern – September 28th, 2021 from 2-5 p.m.
Register for a meeting in your region to learn about the SHSP update for the 2022-2026 period, highway safety issues in your region and to review and provide input on strategies and actions that will be implemented to reduce fatalities and serious injuries on Virginia’s roadways
More information on the draft Emphasis Area actions is provided in the registration link and on the VDOT SHSP webpage.
If you have any changes, new ideas or questions about the SHSP update you would like to submit, send your comments to Stephen.Read@VDOT.Virginia.gov with the words “2026 SHSP” in the subject line.
Exploring the Plan
Motor vehicle crashes are viewed mainly as a transportation and mobility issue, which is why deaths and serious injuries are compared using transportation-oriented measures such as the number of vehicle miles traveled (VMT) or the type of facility.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety in 2015, Virginia ranks 11th lowest in the nation (tied with Hawaii and Wisconsin) on deaths per 100 million VMT.2 Overall reductions in the rate of fatalities and serious injuries can be attributed, in part, to increased vehicle miles traveled, which has leveled out in the last few years
What is the SHSP?
Comprehensive, multi-stakeholder plan that sets goals and strategies to reduce highway deaths and injuries:
- Statewide, multimodal highway safety plan
- Coordinated framework for reducing deaths and serious injuries
- Involvement of Federal, state, local, and private sector stakeholders: 4Es
- Required to be updated every five years
Mission, Vision, and Goals:
Vision: Toward Zero Deaths. All roadway users should arrive safely at their destinations
Mission:To save lives and reduce injuries through a data driven strategic approach that uses enforcement, education, engineering, and emergency response strategies.
Goals: To reduce highway deaths and serious injuries by half by 2030, with a 5 Year objectives to reduce deaths and serious injuries by 3 percent per year
A critical first step was the identification and selection of the emphasis areas for the plan in consultation with safety stakeholders. After reviewing the data, the SHSP Steering Committee selected the following emphasis areas for the plan:
The Cost of Crashes in Virginia
Traffic fatalities and serious injuries also substantially impact the Commonwealth and local communities through increased medical costs, lost wages, insurance costs, taxes, police, fire and emergency services, legal and court costs as well as property damage.
According to NHTSA, the economic and societal impact of motor vehicle crashes in the Commonwealth is nearly $5 billion in 2010 dollars.
The following facts demonstrate the public health problem the Commonwealth is facing due to traffic crashes. In Virginia between 2011 and 2015 motor vehicle crashes annually caused:
The objectives of the SHSP will be tracked each year to determine if the SHSP remains on target to achieve the recommended reductions. Since it is a living document, the actions in the plan can be updated if it is not meeting the stated goal. The following objectives have been determined:
How We'll Do It:
To further link the plan to effective approaches, the strategies and actions all focus on the 4 E s of safety:
This E involves the design of roadways and the surrounding environment using solutions that reduce crashes or minimize the severity of crashes when they occur. Click here to learn more about our state’s infrastructure and operations.
This E involves providing information to road users, through public awareness campaigns, media stories, social media, driver’s education, and other avenues, to help them make good choices.
Emergency Medical Services
This E involves the efforts of emergency responders in providing medical services quickly and effectively to individuals involved in crashes.
This E involves the actions and efforts by the thousands of state and local law enforcement officers throughout the Commonwealth who are working to ensure road users follow the law. Strategies and actions in this area often involve targeted efforts in areas where crashes happen and involve changing road user behavior.