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Identifying Areas for Safety Improvements

​​​The N.C. Department of Transportation's Traffic Safety Unit uses crash data, other safety data, and roadway features, informed by priorities of the local community, staff expertise, and public input, to identity and treat roads and intersections that are high priority for safety improvement.

The following programs help NCDOT identify locations for road safety improvements.​

Highway Safety Improvement Program

The Highway Safety Improvement Program uses a continuous and organized process to review and address specific traffic safety concerns throughout the state. The program uses statewide crash data and a set of criteria called safety warrants to identify locations that need improvement.​

Locations that meet warrant criteria are categorized as potentially hazardous locations. Detailed crash analyses are performed on these locations with the more severe and correctable crash patterns. Regional Traffic Engineering staff perform engineering field investigations and develop recommendations for specific safety improvements.


  • HSIP Locations Map – Online map of the specific roads, intersections and bridges identified in the HSIP process as the highest priority for safety improvement.

  • Active HSIP Projects  – List of the currently active safety improvement projects that address locations identified in the HSIP.​

Fatal Crash Program

The Traffic Safety Unit tracks every crash that results in a fatality. Summaries of fatal crashes are regularly sent to state and local agency engineering staff, law enforcement and decision makers around the state. In-depth investigations are conducted for many of the fatal crashes to identify contributing factors and to determine what types of safety improvement, if any, are appropriate.​

Road Safety Reviews

A Road Safety Review is a formal evaluation of a roadway that has been identified as a location of interest for safety improvement. An independent review team not previously involved with a location reviews crash data, performs field investigations as a group, and recommends potential safety improvements. 

The recommendations generally focus on lower cost signing and maintenance strategies that can be addressed in the short term to reduce the number and severity of crashes.

However, recommendations may include higher cost options that are longer term solutions. In addition, law enforcement actions may be necessary to address behavioral aspects of the road users, such as targeted speed limit enforcement. Time and budget constraints may dictate when and whether certain improvements are put in place.   ​

7/2/2021 3:26 PM