Data-Driven Practices Maximize Resources amid Shrinking Budgets

Law enforcement agencies are facing unprecedented reductions in resources that have affected all aspects of policing. At the same time, demands for service are rising while the critical mission of preserving public safety remains constant. Now more than ever, police executives are forced to prioritize resources and ensure the maximum possible return on investment.

The return on investment for traffic safety is simple. A reduction in the deaths, injuries, and property damage that result from traffic crashes has a direct impact on the safety of communities. Recent evidence suggests that the investment is returning dividends. Fatalities nationwide are at the lowest level in decades. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) projects that the number of fatalities in 2010 will be 3 percent lower than in 2009, despite an estimated increase of 21 billion miles traveled by American motorists. These outcomes are a direct result of the efforts of frontline law enforcement officers to address traffic safety problems.