The Federal Transit Administration recently unveiled an updated version of its National Public Transportation Safety Plan, which creates a “blueprint” to help transit agencies across the country adopt stronger safety measures. The agency made a draft of the updated safety plan available via the Federal Register for a 60-day comment period.
[Above photo by the FTA]
In the updated plan, FTA proposes adding in several performance measures, including strategies to reduce vehicle collisions, transit worker injuries and fatalities, and transit worker assaults.
FTA is also proposing new performance measures for Public Transportation Agency Safety Plan risk reduction programs, which will be used by joint labor-management safety committees to set targets and assess the effectiveness of safety mitigation strategies.
“Safety remains our top priority, and this updated National Public Transportation Safety Program will help make a safe transportation option even safer,” explained Polly Trottenberg, deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, in a statement. “We look forward to working closely with transit agencies across the country on further improving safety for workers and riders.”
The National Public Transportation Safety Plan is FTA’s primary “guidance document” for improving transit safety performance on all federally supported public transportation systems and includes best practices, tools, technical assistance, voluntary standards, and other resources. The agency added that the proposed updates would replace the original plan published in January 2017.
“As millions of Americans take transit to jobs, schools, and other daily activities, we must continue to ensure safety remains the top priority,” said FTA Administrator Nuria Fernandez. “These proposed updates enhance FTA’s safety framework, as future safety-related rules, regulations, and guidance.”
This plan is also aligned with USDOT’s long-term goal of reaching zero fatalities on America’s roadways as part of it overarching National Roadway Safety Strategy – introduced in January 2022 – by adding safety performance criteria for vehicular collisions and providing voluntary standards for bus transit.
[Editor’s note: The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials and two of its state DOT members joined a national effort launched by USDOT in February to formally adopt the NRSS in order to reduce fatalities and serious injuries on U.S. highways.]