Seed Project – Transportation Safety Resource: Development of an Enhanced Crash Data Analysis Tool: “A Plan for Safety”
CAIT project no.: Safety RU4474
Fiscal Year: 2004/2005
Rutgers-CAIT Author(s): Anna Okola, Ardavan Amini, Mohsen Jafari, Ali Maher
External Author(s): Patricia Ott
Sponsor(s): NJDOT, FHWA-USDOT
According to a 2000 report by NHTSA, 42,000 people were killed and 3,200,000 people were injured on U.S. roadways, with a total economic cost exceeding $230 billion. New Jersey has the highest population density in the country, and the highest numbers of drivers per miles of road. Naturally, traffic safety is top on the State’s agenda for improving transportation and quality of life. Accurate reporting, processing and maintaining of crash data, has been a priority for NJDOT in its effort to develop effective solutions to traffic safety problems. In 2002, NJDOT engaged a nationally recognized team of safety experts to perform a Traffic Records Assessment of the New Jersey Traffic Data System. These evaluators made recommendations that included a revised crash data form which will improve data collected by police officers at the scene of an incident. The Transportation Safety Resource Center has partnered with the NJDOT Division of Traffic Engineering & Safety to develop crash data analysis applications for the NJDOT. Customized software (Plan4Safety) was developed to enable crash data analysis. Plan4Safety offers a powerful statistical analysis tool, which will be enhanced over the next few months to include predictive crash modeling and cost/benefit evaluation capabilities. The data to be analyzed is only as good as the data collected, as such, consistent and complete crash records are critical to a rigorous analysis. Plan4Safety, along with the new crash data form, will enable New Jersey to improve on crash data collection and subsequent analysis.