Technical Memorandum


DATE:   February 2, 2023

TO:       Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization

FROM:  Samuel Taylor, Boston Region MPO Staff

RE:        Roadway Safety Targets, Calendar Year 2023


The United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) requires states and metropolitan planning organizations (MPO) to establish annual targets for federally required roadway safety performance measures, which pertain to fatalities and serious injuries from motor vehicle crashes. The Boston Region MPO has voted to support the Commonwealth of Massachusetts’ federally required annual targets for these roadway safety performance measures each year from 2018 through 2022. The Commonwealth has set its roadway safety targets for calendar year (CY) 2023, and the MPO is required to establish its CY 2023 targets by February 27, 2023, by either agreeing to support the Commonwealth’s targets or setting its own. MPO staff recommends that the MPO vote to support the Commonwealth’s CY 2023 targets for these federally required measures, and requests that the MPO take action to do so at its February 2, 2023, meeting.


1         Overview

The National Performance Management Measures: Highway Safety Improvement Program rule identifies five performance measures related to crashes involving motor vehicles for which targets must be set:


1.    Number of fatalities

2.    Rate of fatalities per 100 million vehicle-miles traveled (VMT)

3.    Number of serious injuries

4.    Rate of serious injuries per 100 million VMT

5.    Number of nonmotorized fatalities and nonmotorized serious injuries


The USDOT requires states to establish and report targets for these measures for the next calendar year by August 31 each year. MPOs have 180 days—no later than February 27 of the applicable calendar year—to establish their own targets using one of the following methods:


·       Supporting state targets. Should the MPO select this option, it would agree to plan and program projects so that they contribute to accomplishing the Commonwealth’s targets.

·       Setting quantifiable targets specific to the MPO region. Should the MPO select this option, it would need to estimate VMT for all public roads in the MPO region and report the methods used to produce those estimates.


In either case, the MPO will need to coordinate with the Commonwealth when setting targets. It will also need to incorporate goals, objectives, measures, and targets from the Commonwealth’s safety plans and processes into the MPO’s planning process.


2         Massachusetts CY 2023 Performance Targets

Table 1 shows the Commonwealth’s CY 2023 roadway safety performance targets for the federally required performance measures. It also notes the Commonwealth’s long-term goal to eliminate fatalities and serious injuries on Massachusetts roadways. The targets in Table 1 reflect a 2019–23 rolling annual average, as required by US DOT.


Table 1
Proposed Roadway Safety Targets (CY 2023)

Performance Measure

CY 2023 Target

Long-Term Target

Number of Fatalities



Rate of Fatalities per 100 Million VMT



Number of Serious Injuries



Rate of Serious Injuries per 100 Million VMT



Number of Nonmotorized Fatalities and Nonmotorized Serious Injuries



*This target value is expressed as a five-year rolling annual average.

CY = Calendar Year. VMT = Vehicle-Miles Traveled.

Sources: Federal Highway Administration, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and Boston Region MPO


For more information about previous state and MPO roadway safety performance targets, see the MPO staff memo titled “Federally Required Calendar Year 2022 Roadway Safety Targets.”[1] Appendix A includes data and details about how the Commonwealth set its CY 2023 roadway safety performance targets.


3         Next Steps and Requested Action

MPO staff recommends that the Boston Region MPO vote to support the Commonwealth’s CY 2023 roadway safety performance targets. This option would satisfy federal requirements and would reflect the way the MPO will need to collaborate with the Commonwealth on safety strategies to reduce fatalities and injuries in the Boston region, which include education campaigns and driver behavior laws as well as infrastructure investment. Staff requests that the MPO take action to do so at its February 2, 2023, meeting. Should the MPO select this target-setting approach, staff will present and describe these targets in the performance chapters of the federal fiscal years 2023–27 TIP document and Destination 2050, the MPO’s next Long-Range Transportation Plan. Going forward, the Boston Region MPO, Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the region’s municipalities, and other stakeholders will need to work together on planning and investment activities that will support improvements in roadway safety outcomes.


Appendix A: MassDOT CY23 Safety Performance Measure Targets (PM1)



The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) operates its programs, services, and activities in compliance with federal nondiscrimination laws including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VI), the Civil Rights Restoration Act of 1987, and related statutes and regulations. Title VI prohibits discrimination in federally assisted programs and requires that no person in the United States of America shall, on the grounds of race, color, or national origin (including limited English proficiency), be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives federal assistance. Related federal nondiscrimination laws administered by the Federal Highway Administration, Federal Transit Administration, or both, prohibit discrimination on the basis of age, sex, and disability. The Boston Region MPO considers these protected populations in its Title VI Programs, consistent with federal interpretation and administration. In addition, the Boston Region MPO provides meaningful access to its programs, services, and activities to individuals with limited English proficiency, in compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation policy and guidance on federal Executive Order 13166.

The Boston Region MPO also complies with the Massachusetts Public Accommodation Law, M.G.L. c 272 sections 92a, 98, 98a, which prohibits making any distinction, discrimination, or restriction in admission to, or treatment in a place of public accommodation based on race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, or ancestry. Likewise, the Boston Region MPO complies with the Governor's Executive Order 526, section 4, which requires that all programs, activities, and services provided, performed, licensed, chartered, funded, regulated, or contracted for by the state shall be conducted without unlawful discrimination based on race, color, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry, national origin, disability, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans), or background.

A complaint form and additional information can be obtained by contacting the MPO or at

To request this information in a different language or in an accessible format, please contact

Title VI Specialist
Boston Region MPO
10 Park Plaza, Suite 2150
Boston, MA 02116

By Telephone:
857.702.3700 (voice)

For people with hearing or speaking difficulties, connect through the state MassRelay service:

·       Relay Using TTY or Hearing Carry-over: 800.439.2370

·       Relay Using Voice Carry-over: 866.887.6619

·       Relay Using Text to Speech: 866.645.9870

For more information, including numbers for Spanish speakers, visit



[1] Boston Region MPO Staff. “Federally Required Calendar Year 2022 Roadway Safety Targets.” February 3, 2022. Available at