SMS Committee members, transportation safety experts, and interested parties collaborated to write the August 1999 draft Iowa Strategic Highway Safety Plan identifying transportation safety issues with possible strategies and solutions. The plan will be used to help identify and focus resources on specific highway safety issues and collaborative strategies used in resolving them.

The plan is conceived as a "living document" that will continue to change and evolve as a central source for highway safety discussion and strategy development for all of Iowa's roadways. It serves as a "tool box" of strategies to apply in resolving specific issues facing Iowa's transportation safety community.

The plan addresses traditional concerns for "infrastructure" as well as driver, occupant, vehicle, and post-crash responsibilities. Moreover, many initiatives within this Strategic Plan are built upon safety programs already in existence while others suggest new programs. Strategies included reflect the multi-disciplinary makeup of SMS representing "Engineering, Enforcement, Education, Emergency Response & ...Everyone else".

Another important highway safety initiative, Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) will generally address a different set of issues, although both may investigate some of these issues and correlate their results.

The American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials' (AASHTO) Strategic Highway Safety Plan, dated September 1997, was used as a model for developing the Iowa plan. The AASHTO Plan contained six major topics with a total of 22 key emphasis areas. The original AASHTO plan can be viewed at

In the Iowa Plan, some emphasis areas were deleted or combined and five were added. The Iowa Plan contains now 25 key emphasis areas, with a list of proposals for each section.

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by Michael D. Pawlovich