April 2018


Congratulations 2018 Grant Winners!

The 2018 Safe System Innovation Grant Winners were announced at our quarterly meeting. The U.S. Department of Transportation committed $1 million a year for three years to fund Safe System Innovation Grants. An additional $500,000 has been added to the funding this year from FHWA. Once the details are official we will announce additional grant winners from the original pool of applicants.

We received 81 applications this year requesting a total of $12.1 million in funding and narrowed it down to 8 winners listed below.

  • America Walks in partnership with University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center (UNC-HSRC) – Accelerating Adoption of Safer Systems for All Road Users
  • Bicycle Colorado – Bicycle-Friendly Driver and Confident Commuting Program
  • Center for Latino Progress – Cooperative Community Crash Reduction, Hartford CT
  • City of Boston Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics – Boston’s Safest Driver
  • Lorain County Public Health (Ohio) – Lorain Active Transportation Challenge
  • National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago – Underutilized Strategies in Traffic Safety
  • Texas A&M University Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering in collaboration with Houston Methodist Hospital – A systems approach to reduce drowsy driving among night-shift nurses
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB Youth Safety Lab) in collaboration with Safe Kids Worldwide – Improving Child Restraint Installation in Rural America through Interactive Virtual Presence

Congratulations to all of the winners and thank you to everyone who applied. Your work is making a difference along the road to zero!

RTZ Coalition Vision Report

The Road to Zero Coalition report, A Vision for Achieving Zero Roadway Deaths by 2050, will be released April 22 at the Lifesavers conference in San Antonio. Deborah A.P. Hersman will deliver the keynote address and discuss the report, which outlines three tenets needed to reach zero deaths by 2050: doubling down on what works, accelerating technology and prioritizing safety.

We hope you will take part in promoting this report once it is released April 22. A communications toolkit has been specifically designed to support your efforts and the National Safety Council is hosting a webinar on April 13 for communicators and members of your team to explain the report and ways you can promote it within your organization and with your stakeholders. You can register for the 30 minute webinar here.

If you are not a member of the Road to Zero coalition, we encourage you to join us in saving lives here.

Road to Zero Heads to IIHS

You are invited to join the Road to Zero Coalition to tour the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)Vehicle Research Center on Thursday, May 3 from 9 am – noon in Ruckersville, Virginia (about 100 miles from D.C.) for an opportunity to try out new collision avoidance technology on the demonstration track and to see an IIHS crash test. There is no cost to attend and you can register here.  Agenda below:

  • 9 a.m. Arrival and welcome
  • 9:30-10:30 a.m. Onsite tour
  • 10:30-11:30 a.m. Collision avoidance demonstrations on the track
  • 11:30-noon Crash test and photos

And don’t forget to mark your calendar for the next Road to Zero coalition meeting in Washington D.C. on June 28 from 1 pm – 4 pm – this meeting is later in the day so that our west coast members can join us! Register here

In the Know


Road to Zero coalition members are always busy working on new ways to save lives on our roads. Here are some of the latest updates, findings and news from your fellow members.

We can feature your news, as well. To submit news, announcements or updates for inclusion in the Road to Zero newsletter, email your message to [email protected]. Include all relevant details, links, names, etc. and any special notes regarding the announcement. We look forward to sharing your news and keeping the entire Road to Zero coalition updated on the latest from their fellow members.

This month we have several announcements:

  • The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently released Crash Risk of Cell Phone Use While Driving: A Case-Crossover Analysis of Naturalistic Driving Data. This report uses data from a sample of thousands of drivers to try and determine how much of a risk factor cell phone use is behind the wheel. See the full report.
  • The National Child Passenger Safety Board (NCPSB) is celebrating its 20th anniversary at this year’s Lifesavers conference. This board was established to create and maintain the technical quality, standardization and relevance of the child passenger safety (CPS) technician curriculum, which is part of the National Child Passenger Safety Certification Training Program throughout the United States. The program was created to train people to become certified child passenger safety technicians and instructors in order to provide assistance to families and caregivers for the safe transportation of children. Over the past 20 years, 160,000+ child passenger safety technicians have been trained and 41,000+ are currently certified. Click here to RSVP.
  • April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Distracted driving is a public health issue that affects us all. From cell phones to dashboard infotainment systems to evolving voice command features, each one poses a threat to our safety. You can download free materials about DDAM at nsc.org/justdrive. The National Safety Council is hosting a webinar on the topic for employers April 19 at 11 a.m. CST. Sign up here.
  • This week is National Work Zone Awareness Week, an annual spring campaign meant to encourage safe driving through highway work zones. Learn more about the campaign here.
  • A Below 100 Best Practices Symposium will be held April 17–18 at the Clarence Brown Conference Center in Cartersville, Georgia. Attendees will learn how to instill a lasting culture of common sense officer safety practices at law enforcement agencies. This award-winning program is saving lives and preventing injuries at departments around the country. Register here.
  • A new analysis highlighted in a research letter published in the Journal of the American Medical Association details the increased driving risks on April 20. This “High Holiday” is associated with marijuana use and the letter reports findings of a 12 percent relative increase in fatal crashes on this date. Read the full letter.
  • Inova Fairfax Hospital in Virginia is hosting a Reality Check Teen Driving Program on Saturday, May 12. This program will give teen drivers a better understanding of the trauma sustained in motor vehicle crashes and the dangers of risky driving. Get more information.
  • Get ready for Infrastructure Week! This national week of events runs from May 14-21 and is intended to elevate infrastructure as a critical issue impacting America’s economy, society, security and future.

News from the Hill

Congress passed and the President signed H.R. 1625, an omnibus spending bill for FY2018. In FY18 total budgetary resources, including offsetting collections, the bill provides $86.2 billion to improve and maintain our nation’s transportation infrastructure, including $27.3 billion in discretionary appropriations for the Department of Transportation ($8.7 billion above FY17).This includes:

  • $947 million for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an increase of $36 million over 2017
  • $845 million for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, $201 million above the fiscal year 2017

Within these amounts, the bill provides more than $100 million for research and demonstrations of automated vehicles, a technology that has the potential to save tens of thousands of lives. Get more details from the House Appropriations Committee.

Protect Pedestrians!

Pedestrians are still at risk. GHSA’s annual Spotlight on Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities projects nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2017, marking the second year in a row at numbers not seen in 25 years. It has been more than 25 years since the U.S. experienced this level of pedestrian fatalities.


The report breaks these fatalities down by state, as well as where and when they occur. The report explores potential contributing factors to the high number of pedestrian fatalities and describes promising strategies to reduce these crashes through a combination of engineering, education and enforcement efforts. Read the full report.