Improving Safety on Our Transportation System

2012-2016 Strategic Highway Safety Plan

Read the plan (PDF, 3 MB)

Residents and visitors continue to lose their lives on the commonwealth's roads.

While deaths on Virginia’s highways and streets have dropped significantly over the last decade, recent trends show national and statewide increases in traffic related deaths and severe injuries. 

The Virginia Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) is needed more than ever to deliver data-driven solutions to address safety needs head on. 

The sole purpose of the SHSP is to provide a comprehensive framework to significantly reduce deaths and severe injuries on all public roads.

In fact, the goal of the plan is to achieve zero deaths in Virginia.  

The plan does not address every safety issue in the state, but focuses on critical safety areas with the greatest promise to reduce crashes and injuries. 

Implementation of the plan is supported by the Virginia Department of Transportation's Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) and the Department of Motor Vehicle’s (DMV) Highway Safety Plan (HSP).

The 2012-2016 SHSP identified high payoff strategies and related actions to reduce the most pressing safety concerns, which included:

  • Speed 
  • Young drivers 
  • Occupant protection 
  • Impaired drivers 
  • Roadway departures
  • Intersections

safety meeting brochureWe are making progress in these areas, but it’s time to take a fresh look at the SHSP and continue to reduce the impact of crashes on our families and the economy.

A hallmark of the SHSP is active support from agencies and organizations involved in traffic safety. 

Several of the commonwealth’s agencies participate on a SHSP Steering Committee and have been working together to develop the 2017 - 21 SHSP. 

Committee members are multidisciplinary and represent the 4 Es of safety:

  • Engineering 
  • Enforcement 
  • Education
  • Emergency medical services

This is to ensure the approach to lowering fatalities and serious injuries is comprehensive and balanced. 

Using the results of safety data analysis, the strategies and actions from the previous plan have been revisited and in many instances, revised to better reflect the key safety needs. 

In addition, bicyclists and pedestrians have been added as new emphasis areas.

Committee members work tirelessly to implement Virginia’s SHSP, but to continue moving Toward Zero Deaths (see and meet interim performance objectives, all transportation and safety stakeholders need to play an active role in implementing the updated SHSP.  

In late November and early December, 2016, officials from the SHSP steering committee will conduct a series of regional transportation safety road show meetings throughout the state to obtain input on the 2017-2021 SHSP. 

One of the primary outcomes of the meetings will be to share the results of regional safety analysis and develop a localized approach to addressing safety performance through implementation of the plan. 

To register for a regional meeting near you, click here. Note the venue for the Richmond meeting has been moved to the John Tyler Community College – Midlothian Campus, Eliades Hall – Room E-201, 800 Charter Colony Parkway, Midlothian, Virginia 23114

Commonwealth agencies represented on the steering committee, along with federal agency partners, include:


The steering committee also includes representatives to obtain local perspectives from the Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police and the Hampton Roads Transportation Planning Organization.

Click here to review DMV’s safety programs, safety grants, resources, traffic crash data and the HSP, which includes user behavior education and enforcement actions and treatments.

Click here to view information on Virginia’s HSIP which implements infrastructure (engineering) actions and treatments.

Click here to learn more about strategic highway safety plans.



Page last modified: Nov. 18, 2016