Coordination with PennDOT District 8-0 has resulted in the identification of priority crash segments in the HATS region where the actual number of crashes exceeds the predicted number of crashes, which are calculated based on road conditions and crash history. The segments depicted in the map reflect areas that have a repeated number of crashes or "crash clusters" as identified by PennDOT. The top 10 worst segments for each county are included.
HATS has adopted a process of conducting detailed studies in corridors like those depicted here or as otherwise identified by constituent municipalities where crash causes and roadway conditions are evaluated, enabling a range of recommendations to be made to reduce future crashes. These may include large-scale engineering improvements, but also low-cost safety improvements, often using Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) funding. Examples of low-cost improvements include curve warning signs, tree cutting, lighting and pavement markings. These are characterized by high cost-benefit ratios and short implementation times. HATS has been successful in completing corridor-based safety studies and programming implementation projects so the recommendations can be rapidly implemented once such studies are completed. HATS intends to continue this approach to address safety needs for the corridors depicted in this section or identified by the region's municipalities.
HATS adopted the PennDOT performance measure for safety improvement, which calls for a 2 percent annual reduction in fatal and major injury crashes based on five-year running average crash rates. The MPO will coordinate annually with PennDOT to track this performance measure and regularly during the corridor safety studies and implementation projects as described above.
In accordance with the process identified above and the overall project development process, a Transportation Needs Form was submitted during the development of the RTP that focused on safety concerns along the entire portion of the I-81 corridor within the HATS region. Also, PennDOT is conducting a study in 2018 that updates the cost estimate found in the 2005 I-81 Widening Study, anticipated to be approximately $3,000,000,000.
Since the updated widening study did not focus on the needs identified in the submitted Transportation Needs Form and the cost estimate in the updated study exceeds the funding anticipated to be available to HATS during the planning period, it is recommended that a “Master Plan” be conducted for the I-81 corridor that seeks to identify existing and anticipated transportation needs and evaluates a range of fiscally constrained and illustrative alternative improvements that can be incorporated into future Transportation Improvement Programs and the RTP. The “Master Plan” should be developed in coordination with PennDOT District 8-0, the Franklin and Lebanon County MPOs.
- Based on the listing of top crash corridors and/or other key areas of safety concern as identified by the region’s municipalities and stakeholders, conduct a series of corridor studies that seek to identify a range of recommended safety improvements.
- Program implementation projects matching each corridor study to minimize delay between the planning and construction phases for safety enhancements.
- Annually update crash data and evaluate for conformance with the safety performance measure adopted as part of this plan. Also evaluate crash frequency in areas where improvements have been implemented as part of the RTP process.
- Conduct a “Master Plan” for the I-81 corridor that seeks to identify existing and anticipated transportation needs and evaluates a range of fiscally constrained and illustrative alternative improvements that can be incorporated into future Transportation Improvement Programs and the RTP. The “Master Plan” should be developed in coordination with PennDOT District 8-0, the Franklin and Lebanon County MPOs.