Traffic Safety and Pursuit Management

One of the most dangerous aspects of a police officer's job is not facing off against criminals; it's getting behind the wheel of a police car. More law enforcement officers die each year in traffic incidents than from any other cause, including shootings. Many of these deaths occur on the roadside as officers perform their duties.

Making law enforcement officers and their vehicles more visible with the use of warning lights, reflective materials, particular colors and markings, and flares could help promote safety. NIJ-funded research suggests that educating and training the public on how to respond to official vehicles could protect law enforcement as well as their colleagues in emergency medical and fire services.

NIJ is working in partnership with law enforcement, fire service and other first-responder agencies toward the shared goal of increasing safety for first responders as they perform their duties on the nation's streets and highways.

NIJ also is working with law enforcement agencies to increase road safety for officers by applying location-based crime and traffic data to establish effective and efficient methods for deploying law enforcement and other resources to reduce crime, crashes and traffic violations.

Date Created: September 6, 2013