National Center for Rural Road Safety

Rural Specific Challenges

Rural road safety is a particular concern, because the majority of highway fatalities take place on rural roads. In 2012, 19 percent of the US population lived in rural areas but rural road fatalities accounted for 54 percent of all fatalities. Even with reductions in the number of fatalities on the roadways, fatality rate in rural areas is 2.4 times higher than the fatality rate in urban areas.

Addressing safety on local and rural roads presents several challenges including: 1) Safety issues are often random on local and rural roads; 2) Strategies to address local and rural road safety are diverse and draws from several safety areas. The page provides important information to assist in preventing and reducing the severity of crashes on local and rural roads in comprehensible formats.

  • Rural Local & Tribal Road Safety Toolkit | Visit Website
  • Rural Local & Tribal Road Safety Toolkit User Guide #1 | View PDF
  • Rural Local & Tribal Road Safety Toolkit User Guide #2 | View PDF
  • Improving Safety on Rural Local & Tribal Roads: Safety Toolkit | Watch Video
  • Traffic Incident Management on Rural Roads Training | Visit Website
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Two Lane Rural Road Segments | View Webinar
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Rural Two-Lane Intersections | Watch Webinar
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Rural Multilane Highway | Watch Webinar
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Rural Multilane Intersections | Watch Webinar
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Horizontal Curves | Watch Webinar
  • Highway Safety Manual Webinar Series – Applications to Roadway Departure Crashes | Watch Webinar
  • FHWA’s Local and Rural Road Safety Program | Visit Website
  • FHWA Local and Tribal Road Safety MATCH Program | Visit Website
  • Clear Roads Research for Winter Highway Maintenance | Visit Website
  • Clearinghouse for Older Road User Safety | Visit Website
  • South Carolina Department of Transportation Rural Roads Safety Program | Visit Website
  • West Region Transportation Workforce Center | Visit Website
  • Road Safety Fundamentals | View PDF
  • Handbook for Designing Roadways for the Aging Population | View PDF
  • FHWA’s Older Road Users Program | Visit Website
  • Rural Connections: Challenges and Opportunities in America’s Heartland May 2020 | View PDF
  • Traffic Safety Facts: 2019 Data Rural/Urban Comparison of Motor Vehicle Traffic Fatalities | View PDF
  • Geospatial Summary of Crash Fatalities | View PDF
  • Integrating Safety in the Rural Transportation Planning Process | View PDF
  • Assessment of Local Road Safety Funding, Training, and Technical Assistance | Visit Website
  • Cost Effective Local Road Safety Planning and Implementation | View PDF
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