Ninth edition of 'Countermeasures that work' published

Published Tue, 31/07/2018 - 15:41

The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has published its newest edition of Countermeasures that Work: A Highway Safety Countermeasures Guide for State Highway Safety Offices. The guide is a basic reference to assist State Highway Safety Offices in selecting effective, evidence-based countermeasures for traffic safety problem areas. Among the areas covered is alcohol- and drug-impaired driving. The guide also deals with seat belts, speeding, distracted and drowsy driving, young drivers and other important safety topics. For each topic, the guide describes major strategies and countermeasures; summarizes strategy/countermeasure use, effectiveness, costs, and implementation time; and provides references to the most important research summaries and studies. 

In the area of impaired driving, four basic strategies are discussed: 1) Deterrence: enact, publicize, enforce, and adjudicate laws prohibiting impaired driving so that people choose not to drive impaired; 2) Prevention: reduce drinking and drug use and keep impaired drivers from driving; 3) Communications and outreach: inform the public of the dangers of impaired driving and establish social norms that make driving while impaired unacceptable; and 4) Alcohol and drug treatment: reduce alcohol dependency or addiction. 

This guide briefly considers countermeasures to address drugs other than alcohol. Drugs pose quite different and difficult issues at every step, from estimating their prevalence and effect on driving, to developing effective laws and strategies for enforcement, prevention, and treatment. However, many of the countermeasures to address alcohol-impaired driving may also deter drug-impaired driving. 

To see the full report, go to