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Performance-Based Planning & Programming - Safety



Safety Safety is a key component of the federal performance-based planning process. FHWA published the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) Final Rule and Safety Performance Management Measures Final Rule on March 15, 2016 (effective date of April 14, 2016) to help significantly reduce fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads.


Performance Measures & Targets

The safety performance measures in the table below were established as part of the Safety Performance Management Measures Final Rule. State DOTs and MPOs are required to establish and report performance targets annually for each measure. Initial safety targets were due to FHWA by August 31, 2017 for DOTs, and by February 27, 2018 by MPOs – the MPO has 180 days from the date the State DOT’s targets are set to establish its targets. The MPO can either adopt the State DOT’s targets or develop its own quantitative targets.

NCDOT adopted its 2020 (current) safety targets in August 2019. CRTPO adopted the NCDOT targets in February 2020. NCDOT’s 2020 safety targets are shown in the table below:

Performance Measures




NCDOT Adoption Date

CRTPO Adoption Date

Number of fatalities




February 2020

Fatality rate (per 100 million VMT)


Number of serious injuries


Serious injury rate (per 100 million VMT)


Number of non-motorized fatalities and non-motorized serious injuries


Previous year targets can be viewed here.


As part of the Safety Performance Management Measures Final Rule, State DOTs are required to update their Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) every five years. An SHSP is a statewide-coordinated safety plan that identifies a State’s key safety needs and guides investment decisions toward strategies and countermeasures with the most potential to save lives and prevent injuries.

NCDOT’s current SHSP was developed in 2014. CRTPO coordinates with NCDOT on the development of this plan.



State DOTs report safety targets annually in their State HSIP Reports. NCDOT’s HSIP Report can be found here. CRTPO coordinates with NCDOT on the development of this plan. CRTPO reports its safety targets to NCDOT annually via resolution.


Accountability & Transparency

FHWA assesses if State DOTs have made significant progress towards achieving their targets on an annual basis. The assessment begins in December and findings are reported to the DOT by March. Significant progress is made if the DOT has met four of its five targets or the actual outcome for the target is better than baseline performance.

If the State DOT does not meet or make significant progress toward meeting its targets, it must use obligation authority equal to the HSIP apportionment for the fiscal year (FY) prior to the target year (only for HSIP projects) and submit an HSIP Implementation Plan to FHWA.

MPOs do not currently face repercussions if significant progress is not made toward meeting their targets.


Additional Resources