Traffic Incident Management (TIM) Performance Measurement: On the
Road to Success
Contact Information: Operations Feedback at OperationsFeedback@dot.gov.
Transportation Operations Web Site
Federal Highway Administration
Office of Operations
Download the Printable Version [PDF,
You will need the Adobe
Acrobat Reader to view this PDF.
| TIM teams across the country are beginning to explore measuring
team or "program-level" TIM performance as the only means to improve
multi-agency team response. TIM stakeholders share a common goal
to safely restore the roadways as quickly as possible because this
equates to lives saved:
- Every minute of incident delay multiplies traffic queues
by a factor of four, and increases the risk for secondary crashes
- The likelihood of a secondary crash increases by 2.8% for
each minute the primary incident continues to be a hazard
- Faster response time has a well-documented relationship to
the increased likelihood of crash survival
- Responder lives remain at risk every minute they are on the
TIM teams across the country are recognizing that improvements in individual
agency TIM operations are helpful, but that to make a real impact responders
must work together to assess, identify and act on opportunities for
improvement. In short, TIM has become a team sport. TIM teams across
the country are increasingly interested in jointly measuring performance
as a team to win more resources for TIM.
The biggest barriers to jointly measuring performance of multiagency TIM
operations include different definitions for common measures such as "incident
clearance time," institutional concerns over data sharing, and incompatible
data systems. FHWA's TIM Performance Measurement Focus State Initiative,
however, has shown that all of these hurdles can be overcome.
Law enforcement, fire and rescue, emergency medical services, and transportation
agencies involved in traffic incident management (TIM) share a common
goal— restoring the roadways as safely and quickly as possible.
They know that every minute of incident delay multiplies traffic queues
by a factor of four and increases the risk to responders' and drivers'
FHWA's Traffic Incident Management Program-Level Performance Measurement
Focus State Initiative
FHWA launched a focus state initiative in 2005 to develop and test
consensus-based, multi-agency, or "program-level" performance measures
for TIM. TIM leaders from transportation and law enforcement organizations
in 11 states reached consensus on three program-level TIM objectives
and associated performance measures for their TIM teams:
Consensus-based, Program-level TIM Performance Measures Developed
by Focus States
|TIM Program Objectives
||Related Performance Measures
|Reduce "Roadway" Clearance Time
||Time between first recordable awareness of incident by a responsible
agency and first confirmation that all lanes are available for traffic
|Reduce "Incident" Clearance Time
||Time between first record able awareness of incident by a responsible agency and time at which the last responder has left the scene.
|Reduce the Number of Secondary Crashes
||Number of unplanned crashes beginning with the time of detection
of the primary incident where a collision occurs either a) within
incident scene or b) within the queue, including the opposite direction, resulting from the original incident.
Focus State TIM Performance Measurement Accomplishments
- Achieved landmark agreement on common definitions for three core
TIM performance measures.
- Demonstrated that multi-agency data collection and fusion to improve
TIM can be accomplished.
- Demonstrated that by working together to measure TIM performance,
transportation and law enforcement agencies were able to overcome
institutional data sharing hurdles and improved their ability to quantify
- Helped agencies more effectively build support for their TIM program
and win additional funding for TIM technical and resource needs by
showing quantified TIM benefits.
Getting Started with TIM Performance Measurement
Getting started measuring program-level TIM has never been easier.
The experiences and resources of the 11 focus states and others in the
TIM community are a mouse-click away with the TIM Performance Measurement
Knowledge Management System:
TIM Performance Measures 11 Focus States:
- New York
- North Carolina
- Subscribe to the TIM Performance Measurement LISTSERV
to share resources that may be helpful to others, and conveniently
access the experiences and expertise of the focus states and your
peers across the country for your questions. Send an email to TIMPM@dot.gov
- Visit the TIM Performance Measurement Knowledgebase
to download helpful resources including sample MOU's, CAD-TMC integration
strategies and requirements documents that have worked for others,
as well as presentations, studies and reports that can help you build
support in your region for TIM performance measurement. Search by
keyword or browse by performance measure, conference/event (for presentations
you've seen) or document type to find what you're looking for. Bookmark
the Knowledgebase: https://ops.fhwa.dot.gov/eto_tim_pse/preparedness/tim/knowledgebase/index.htm
Steps to Success
- Recruit agency champions for program-level TIM Performance Measurement.
- Develop a plan, including a plan to exchange needed data between
- Test the performance measures with available data, manually at
first if necessary.
- Identify and plan for any needed system modifications to support
- Modify your plan as needed.
- Track your progress on the Road to Success!
Want to Know More?
FHWA TIM Program Manager