U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590

Roadway Safety Professional Capacity Building Program

Put Your Plan into Action

An SHSP can only work if the plan is brought to life through action. There are at least four fundamental elements and four steps that support implementation of a dynamic, effective SHSP. These are called the "Essential Eight" and are highlighted below, as well as in the SHSP Implementation Process Model (IPM).

  • New! SHSP Leadership Briefing Packet: This packet provides information to brief leaders on the importance of a state's Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP), its role as part of the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP), and why their involvement in this effort is crucial.
  • Leadership, Collaboration, and Communication: Successful SHSP development and implementation requires leadership, collaboration, and communication. The interaction or synergy of these elements results in an outcome greater than would be accomplished by focusing efforts on just one element. In the complex, multidisciplinary world of the SHSP, leaders bring together the diverse interests and concerns of engineers, planners, law enforcement officers, education officials, emergency medical services personnel, and others.
  • Collecting, Analyzing and Sharing Data: Using data to identify safety problems is fundamental to successful SHSP implementation. Just as development of the SHSP was a data-driven process, an effective implementation process also depends on appropriate use of data. 
  • Developing Emphasis Area Action Plans: SHSP emphasis areas should be supported by action plans that provide specifics such as performance measures, funding sources, project-level detail, and evaluation criteria for assessing outcomes.  Action plans turn SHSP concepts and ideas into a reality that saves lives and prevents injuries.
  • Integrating the SHSP into Other Transportation and Safety Plans: Effective SHSP implementation leverages the resources of other transportation planning and programming activities. The SHSP can be integrated into existing transportation and safety planning processes, such as LRTPs, S/TIPs, HSIPs, HSPs, and CVSPs.
  • Developing a Marketing Strategy for the SHSP: Marketing is the process for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging information about transportation safety to the public, to safety stakeholders, and to elected officials. Marketing benefits SHSP implementation efforts in several ways: it increases awareness of the SHSP goal to reduce traffic-related fatalities and serious injuries; educates key political leaders on their role in saving lives; and helps address those SHSP elements that require behavior change.
  • Monitoring Progress, Evaluating Results, and Establishing a Feedback Loop: Monitoring, evaluation, and feedback are methods for measuring SHSP progress, understanding its impact on safety, identifying and institutionalizing lessons learned, improving decision-making, and providing the information necessary to make course corrections and update the SHSP.