Intersection Crash Reduction

2021 NACo Achievement Award Winner

Loudoun County, Va., VA

About the Program

Category: Criminal Justice and Public Safety (Best in Category)

Year: 2021

AbstractIn the Spring of 2020, the Loudoun County Sheriff Office (LCSO) created a traffic safety initiative to reduce the number of crashes at intersections within the county. The central focus was to increase traffic safety and educate residents while reducing the number of crashes located in the intersections with the most crashes.In the past, traffic safety and enforcement were measured by the number of citations issued in a particular area or physically placing marked units in the area to deter driving behavior that may cause crashes. This includes speeding, driver inattention and alcohol/drug-impaired drivers. These enforcement types have shown no considerable change in the number of crashes or reduced any measured traffic safety category to include distracted driving.Our initiatives exigency saves lives, prevents injuries, and provides an efficient, effective, and impartial service to our citizens. The goals were to provide measured empirical data that could show changes in crashes at intersections in Loudoun County, VA. We applied new enforcement methods and provided institutional knowledge to introduce traffic engineering adjustments while employing crime displacement methods in a traffic safety environment. By partnering with the Virginia State Police, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT), in 2020 the LCSO reduced crashes at the top twelve intersections by more than 50% percent. At the same time, having a 35% drop in total crashes in the county. The volume of all crashes for the past three years was examined and compared to the new enforcement measures. In comparison, citations and police presence are required to achieve these results. The formula requires a tiny workforce while attaining maximum results and allowing traffic personnel to be in other places enforcing rather than retroactively working on crashes at these intersections.