Safety Performance Functions of Low-Volume Roadways Academic Article uri icon


  • The Fixing Americas Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) mandates a Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) for all states that emphasizes a data-driven, strategic approach to improving highway safety on all public roads that focuses on performance. To determine the predicted crashes on a specific roadway facility, the most convenient and widely used tool is the first edition of Highway Safety Manual (HSM), which provides predictive models [known as safety performance functions (SPFs)] of crash frequencies for different roadways. Low-volume roads (LVRs) are defined as roads located in rural or suburban areas with daily traffic volumes of less than or equal to 400 vehicles per day (vpd). LVRs cover a significant portion of the roadways in the U.S. While much work has been done to develop SPFs for high-volume roads, less effort has been devoted to LVR safety issues. This study used 20132017 traffic count, and roadway network and crash data from North Carolina to develop six SPFs for three LVRs, which can be used to predict total crashes, as well as fatal and injury crashes. This study also performed a sensitivity analysis to show the influence of traffic volumes on expected crash frequencies. The SPFs developed in this study can provide guidance to state and local agencies with the means to quantify safety impacts on LVR networks.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Das, S., Tsapakis, I., & Datta, S.

citation count

  • 5

complete list of authors

  • Das, Subasish||Tsapakis, Ioannis||Datta, Songjukta

publication date

  • January 2019