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Mission Statement:

The Research and Evaluation program conducts research and evaluation projects dealing with behaviors and attitudes in highway safety. Program focus is on drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and motorcyclists and their role in the traffic safety. Laboratory and field studies are conducted to identify and measure behaviors involved in crashes or associated with injuries. Scientific research is conducted to develop and refine countermeasures to deter unsafe behaviors and promote safe alternatives. Evaluation projects are designed and implemented to test countermeasure effectiveness in the real world. Program efforts are focused in the folowing areas: alcohol-impaired driving, drug-impaired driving, occupant protection (including child safety seats), speed and aggressive driving, pedestrian and bicyclist safety, motorcyclist safety, older driver safety, improving emergency medical services, drowsy driving and new driver safety.

What's new in Research and Evaluation Program?

2003 Motor Vehicle Occupant Safety Survey Volume 1 Methodology Report (posted 09/31/2004)
The Motor Vehicle Occupant Safety Survey (MVOSS) is a large sample national telephone survey on occupant protection issues conducted every 2-3 years for NHTSA.  This series of Volumes presents results from the 2003 MVOSS.  Volume 1 presents the survey methodology as well as the survey questionnaires.

Antihistamines and Driving-Related Behavior: A Review of the Evidence for Impairment. (posted 06/22/2004)
NHTSA sponsored a review of the effects of first- and second-generation antihistamines on impairment. There is overwhelming evidence that the first-generation antihistamines produce objective signs of skills performance impairment as well as subjective symptoms of sedation. In contrast, second-generation antihistamines show much fewer incidence of objective skills performance impairment and no evidence of subjective sedation. The proper selection of second-generation antihistamines for treatment of symptoms of cols, flu, and allergies should produce little impairment of skilled performance, such as driving.

Drugs and Human Performance Fact Sheets (posted 05/11/2004) .pdf version
These Fact Sheets present information on sixteen of the most commonly used/abused drugs. They include information such as psychopharmacology, as well as the specific effect each drug has on driving. Toxicologists, prosecutors, police and others interested in driving under the influence of drugs cases wil be interested in their content.

Aggressive Driving Enforcement (posted 04/23/2004)
This report presents the results of a study that evaluated the effects of two aggressive driving enforcement programs in Indianapolis, Indiana and Tucson, Arizona.

Public Perceptions of the July 2003 You Drink & Drive. You Lose. Crackdown: Telephone Surveys Show the Media Campaign Reaches Target Audience (posted 03/29/2004)
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Office of Research & Technology is evaluating the July 2003 impaired driving You Drink and Drive. You Lose. crackdown (campaign). This Research Note reports the results of surveys conducted to measure public perceptions of the crackdown.

Misuse of Child Restraints (posted 2/04/2004)
This report presents the results of a study that measured the current level of misuse of child restraint systems among the general public. The project focused specifically on forms of misuse that can be expected to raise the risk of injury to a child in the event of a crash. The study collected data on 5,527 children under 80 lbs in six States.

Enhanced Sanctions for Higher BACs: Evaluation of Minnessota's High - BAC Law (posted 2/04/2004) Also available in .pdf
This research study evaluated Minnesota’s "high BAC" law which mandates enhanced sanctions for DWI offenders with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .20 or more.