States Urged to Utilize Updated Traffic Crash Guideline for Better Data Collection and Reporting

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News Releases

August 1, 2017

Contact: Madison Forker, 202-789-0942 x120

Model crash report, context-specific sections, and a new element for autonomous vehicles will make it easier for states to collect and share data to improve highway safety

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With traffic fatalities on the rise, guidance on how to collect high-quality crash data becomes ever more important. Developed cooperatively by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria (MMUCC) 5th Edition guideline has been updated to reflect the latest behavioral and technological changes impacting vehicles, drivers, and front-line data collectors.

The voluntary MMUCC guideline identifies motor vehicle crash data elements and attributes that states are encouraged to collect and include in their crash data systems. It encourages greater uniformity and common definitions for vehicle crash data to make it easier to share and compare data at the local, state and national levels. This most recent update streamlines on-site data collection, reorganizing the guideline into context-specific modules related to the type of crash and allowing more data to be derived from the integrated systems many states now use.

Quality crash data is vital to safety on our nation’s roadways. It is used to identify critical issues, shape highway safety messages, target enforcement efforts to the areas that need them most, inform the development of needed highway safety legislation, and evaluate the impact of highway safety countermeasures.

“So much is changing on our roadways, and traffic fatalities are increasing at an alarming rate,” said Jonathan Adkins, GHSA Executive Director. “We need good data to make informed decisions about how to change driver behaviors and save more lives. GHSA strongly encourages states to align their crash records with MMUCC and collect comprehensive, consistent data that is critical to pinpointing regional and national trends.”

Other important updates to the MMUCC 5th Edition include guidance to help improve data quality, mapping rules to help states measure the extent to which their crash data aligns with MMUCC, and an editable MMUCC-based crash report template. A dynamic element that captures data on crashes involving autonomous vehicles (AVs) has also been introduced. To keep pace with rapid development in this area, the AV element will be reviewed on an annual basis.

The MMUCC 5th Edition is the result of 18-month collaboration between NHTSA, GHSA, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), and subject matter experts from state Departments of Transportation (DOTs), local law enforcement, emergency medical services, safety organizations, industry partners, and academia. The traffic records community and general public also contributed comments. The next update of MMUCC is tentatively scheduled for 2022.

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About GHSA

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit Find us on Facebook at or follow us on Twitter @GHSAHQ.

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