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Safe Communities - Transportation Safety Plan

Car accident

Clackamas County is a diverse 1,879 square mile region with over 3,000 miles of roads connecting a mix of urban and rural communities. Given the large rural area, mix of road types and conditions plus the many various agencies involved in the safety of the public on these roads, it has been difficult to determine how safe the roads were and what could be done to make them safer for everyone. Studies have shown that from 2005 to 2009, 160 people lost their lives, more than 900 were seriously injured and an average of 3,917 crashes occurred each year on Clackamas roads — the third highest in the State of Oregon. It was decided that something had to be done.

In 2005, the Clackamas County Safe Communities Program (CCSCP) was formed to coordinate and collaborate with other regional agencies to promote safety and education. These partnerships opened communications between agencies and the public about safer driving. Given the success of the CCSCP it was decided to take road safety to the next step. In cooperation with the Oregon Department of Transportation, CCSCP initiated the development of a Transportation Safety Action Plan (TSAP). After extensive research into the conditions of the transportation system, the history of accidents and the resources available/required to build the programs required to improve safety, a plan was adopted by Clackamas County in 2012 with the goal to have the initial phases implemented in 2013/2014. The plan would be reviewed and updated on an ongoing basis to create the safest transportation system possible.

With the collaboration of many regional agencies the initial phase planned two technology tools to assist in the communication and development of the TSAP:

The Safe Communities web site was designed to be a landing page for all services, agencies, users and information related to enhancing overall safety of Clackamas County transportation. This allows a single place for communications, a calendar, event updates, email notifications, educational materials, news releases, etc. It contains a mix of interagency information in one searchable site. The site allows for access by the public and registered members. Members have additional access to forums, email subscriptions, event calendar updates, various reports and additional information. Clackamas County designed and maintains the site as a non-charge service for the other agencies and partners. The site is Continually updated with new information, events and reports.

The Safe Communities Analysis Application is an online tool that allows users to spatially and tabularlly query crash data from various sources. Users have the option to query using a dynamic query panel, location query panel or selection tools provided within the map toolbar. The dynamic query panel contains a list of predefined fields that allow the user to combine several query fields into a single statement. The user also has the ability to request additional display fields before submitting the query. The location query panel provides the ability to either zoom to an intersection or jurisdiction. The jurisdiction query contains a dropdown list with predefined locations to assist the user. Once the user has identified their geographic location they will have the option to spatially interrogate the data with the provided map tools. These tools include: highlight feature by point/area, select crash by point/icon, and buffer graphics. All successful query results involving crash related data will display on the map and a listing of the returned crash information will be displayed below the map within a table format.

Next Steps

There are already designs in development to add additional datasets to the Analysis Application as well as new formats for reporting/extracting the results. This will provide even more ability to determine the areas of the County that need the most attention and the results of previous actions to resolve problem areas. As the next phase is developed, additional ways to search and organize the results will be made available. The website will continue to be supported and expanded with new information and capabilities as resources are made available.

Services & Benefits

The overall Safe Communities program and Transportation Safety Action Plan has been a major success from the perspective of improved communications, cooperation and education. With the continued commitment of Clackamas County and our partner agencies — and based on results obtained from the new TSAP Mapping Application — it is expected there will be a definite reduction in the number and severity of traffic accidents. From the perspective of the technology utilized to support Safe Communities and the data analysis, there are other important benefits realized as well. Ultimately, its effectiveness will be measured by the number of lives saved.

Safe Communities Website:

TSAP Analytical and Mapping Application:

Technology

The application portion of Safe Communities utilizes the new Mapping Application Development toolkit that TS developed to help in the rapid development and deployment of GIS based applications. (See the Mapping Initiative that is part of this survey).

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