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The Oklahoma Highway Safety Office (OHSO) receives funds annually from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to promote traffic safety initiatives within the State of Oklahoma.

The OHSO solicits applications for highway safety grant projects designed to combat the number and severity of traffic crashes by developing and supporting educational, enforcement, and engineering programs (OHSO Mission). These programs are keyed toward preventing fatalities and reducing injuries on Oklahoma's streets and highways. Grant program areas include Impaired Driving, Child Passenger Safety, Occupant Protection, Pedestrian/Bicycle Safety and Motorcycle Safety.

The contract period coincides with the Federal Fiscal Year (FFY), which runs from October 1 through September 30. All grant applications must contain sufficient documentation to determine the project goal, description, cost, and evaluation benchmarks. The project goal(s) must be consistent with the OHSO statewide goals as set forth in the application.

The annual grant solicitation period runs from December 15 to January 31 for the upcoming Federal Fiscal Year.

Grant Application

Application for Traffic Safety Project

Grant Program Background

The Federal Traffic Safety Grant is a grant program from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). It is intended to support state and local efforts to improve highway safety by providing funding for initiating programs directed at identified highway safety problems. These funds cannot be used to replace existing funding sources. In Oklahoma, this grant program is administered by the Oklahoma Highway Safety Office, a division of the Department of Public Safety.

The OHSO's grant projects are funded for one year periods, based on the availability of federal funding and the performance of the grantee. Applications for new projects or continuation of existing projects must be submitted each year by the established deadline.

All applicants must apply though the State of Oklahoma OKGrants e-grant system available at grants.ok.gov. Applicants approved for funding will be required to enroll in the Oklahoma Office of Management Enterprise Services (OMES) ePay system. Go to the following website to enroll if needed: www.ok.gov/dcs/vendors2/app/index.php. Applicants must have a FEI and DUNS number, and must enter it into the Applicant Information page of the eGrants system.

Highway Safety Grants - Guidelines & Required Elements

The OHSO uses strategic planning to help determine the state's priority highway safety problems and to develop program strategies for addressing these problems. The results of this process are reported annually in the State's Highway Safety Plan (HSP). State and local governmental agencies and nonprofit organizations can submit applications to receive funding for traffic safety projects directed at solving problems identified in the HSP. The HSP is prepared by the OHSO staff, based on input from the traffic safety community.

The Highway Safety Grant Program is intended to allow applicants to address any traffic safety issue identified in the HSP. The applicant must submit a grant application that states the problem to be addressed by the grant project and provides supporting data and detail. The grant narrative must address all of the elements outlined in this guide. The budget should be justified and reasonable and only include allowable costs. Highway Safety Grant applications must clearly identify the highway safety problem(s) to be addressed and the solution(s) to be implemented. Applicants should prioritize and limit the number of problems you address in your grant application. Resources are limited; be specific in your focus.

This is a competitive type application process in which proposals will be reviewed and approved or disapproved based on the State’s problem identification, proposed budget, ability to meet proposed targets and available funding.

FY2020 Primary Program Areas and State Targets

Grants applications must be consistent with and support one or more of the following primary program areas and established state goals identified in the state’s Strategic Highway Safety Plan (ODOT), Highway Safety Plan (OHSO), and Highway Safety Improvement Program (ODOT).

Traffic Fatalities

A total of 657 persons lost their lives due to motor vehicle crashes in the State of Oklahoma in 2017 compared to 687 in 2016. The primary effort of any traffic safety program should be to aid in reducing the number of fatalities and serious injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes.

Serious Injuries

Beginning with the FY2019 highway safety plans, the definition of serious injury was modified to better conform to the updated Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria (MMUCC) standards. There were 2,646 persons seriously injured in motor vehicle crashes in the State of Oklahoma in 2017 compared to 2,788 in 2016.

Statewide Fatality Rate

The fatality rate is a numerical calculation based on the number of motor vehicle fatalities per 100 Million Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). The VMT is determined by ODOT. This calculation allows for comparison of smaller states with larger states as well as smaller communities with larger communities. The Oklahoma statewide fatality rate for 2016 was 1.41 compared to 1.35 in 2015 – the 2017 VMT is not yet available.

Unrestrained Occupant Fatalities and Statewide Seat Belt Use Rate

Of the 657 vehicle fatalities in 2017, 231 of those persons, (35%) were not using vehicle restraint systems – seat belts and child restraint systems, compared to 225 in 2016. The use of seat belts and child car seats is the single most effective way to reduce motor vehicle fatalities and serious injuries.

The statewide seat belt use rate has remained fairly consistent and showing little improvement over the last several years, with a rate of 85.6% in 2018, down from the high of 86.9% in the 2017 survey.

*This program area is identified as a high-risk program area and applications addressing this problem are strongly encouraged.

Fatalities in Crashes Involving Driver or Motorcycle Operator having a BAC of .08 or more

This statistic identifies the number of fatalities resulting from motor vehicle crashes where a driver or motorcycle operator had a BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) of .08 or more – which is the legal limit for driving under the influence of alcohol in Oklahoma. The realization is that in some cases, the fatality was not the driver, but only the victim. In 2017, 137 persons died in these crashes compared to 181 in 2016.

*This program area is identified as a high-risk program area and applications addressing this problem are strongly encouraged.

Speed-related Fatalities

Speed-related actions are consistently in the top 3 identified causes in fatal and serious injury crashes in Oklahoma. In 2017 there were 127 fatalities in speed-related crashes in Oklahoma, compared to 183 in 2016.

Motorcycle Fatalities and Unhelmeted Motorcycle Fatalities

Motorcycle fatalities in Oklahoma have remained fairly consistent over the past several years, with 89 fatalities in 2017 compared to 88 in 2016. Unhelmeted fatalities had increased over the last several years from 44 in 2014 to 64 in 2016. In 2017, preliminary data indicates a decrease to 48 unhelmeted fatalities.

Drivers Under Age 21 Involved in Fatality Crashes

Young drivers continue to be overrepresented in crash reports, both here and nationwide. In Oklahoma there were 94 fatalities in crashes involving a driver under age 21 compared to 79 in 2016 – bearing in mind that like the .08 or more BAC statistic above, the fatality victim was not necessarily the driver under age 21.

Pedestrian Fatalities

Pedestrian fatalities both in Oklahoma and nationwide have been on the increase over the last several years. In Oklahoma, there were 82 pedestrian fatalities in 2017 compared to 87 in 2016, 69 in 2015 and 50 in 2014.

*This program area is identified as a high-risk program area and applications addressing this problem are strongly encouraged.

Pedalcyclist Fatalities

Bicycles and other types of human-propelled devices constitute this program area. While fatalities have remained relatively low and consistent over the last several years, with 7 fatalities in 2017 and 5 in 2016, the 2018 very preliminary data indicates a significant increase in 2018 with 16 fatalities.

Distracted Driving

The use of electronic devices and mobile phones have contributed to a significant increase in fatal and serious injury crashes over the last several years. Driver distraction was listed as a primary factor in 1,404 fatal and serious injury crashes in 2016.

Other Program Areas

Other program areas that may be addressed include Train/Motor Vehicle crashes, older driver programs and Emergency Medical Services.

Components of the OHSO Application

Applicant Information

Identify the organization or agency primarily responsible for support of the program. This will normally be the organization that provides funding for the program and which will be requesting reimbursement of any approved program cost. Also, the Organization personnel responsible for program oversight, financial review, and approval of legal binding agreements.

Project Information

Problem Identification: A complete and detailed description of the problem to be addressed, including any statistical data to support the identified problem.


The target goal(s) to be achieved by the end of the project period. These should be based upon the SMART goal setting process and have an quantitative factor. Innovative type projects should describe types of improvement to be expected along with qualitative factors.

Countermeasures and Performance Measures

Project proposals must identify which evidence-based strategies will be employed and what level of performance each strategy should expect to achieve. Sources for evidence-based strategies include, but are not limited to: NHTSA Countermeasure that Work 9th edition; AASHTO Strategic Highway Safety Plan Problem-Specific Guides Series #69; Drug-Impaired Driving, Center for Problem Oriented Policing; NCHRP Report 622, Effectiveness of Behavioral Highway Safety Countermeasures; FHWA Safe Transportation for Every Pedestrian (STEP); FHWA Proven Safety Countermeasures; CDC Tribal Motor Vehicle Injury Prevention (TMVIP) Best Practices Guide 2016. Innovative type projects must reference other studies or projects conducted which would support the project description and goals.


Identify the various types of costs necessary for supporting the project, including: Personnel costs for salary and benefits, Operating Costs, Equipment Costs, In-state and out-of-state travel costs, and contractual costs.

Other considerations/information

The FY2020 application period runs from December 15, 2018 through January 31, 2019. Applicants should expect to receive notification of selection or non-selection by mid-May 2019. All approved proposals will be required to consent to a Risk-Assessment conducted by the OHSO and provide a copy of the agency’s seat belt policy requiring use of vehicle restraints in all seating positions while on project related activity. Agencies approved for purchase of equipment using grant funding will also be required to provide a copy of the agency’s Purchasing Policy and Inventory Control Policy.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know what funding programs are currently available?
On the OK Grants website, click the Portal Home page to view a calendar of all available opportunities. Click on the listing to view a short description of the grant opportunity.

In order to apply for any grant, you must first obtain approval from the grantor agency to access their grant opportunities. If you are already approved to access OHSO grants, then simply log into the OK Grants system and click the VIEW OPPORTUNITIES button to see funding programs that are open and accepting applications, including any through the Highway Safety Office. Please note that in order to access the Highway Safety Office application you must have the permission level of Agency Administrator or Authorized Official.

How do I register for access to OK Grants?
If you are responsible for the administration of grants at your organization (contract official, grant administrator, agency head, etc.), go to grants.ok.gov and click the 'Agency Administrator Registration' link to begin the registration process for the organization. If the organization is already registered in the system, you will either be approved by an OHSO System Administrator or directed to your registered Agency Administrator to obtain access. In most cases, once an organization Agency Administrator is approved, the organization Agency Administrator is responsible for managing organization access to OK Grants.

Who within the organization can submit an application to the OHSO?
In order to submit the application, the user must have the Agency Administrator or Authorized Official permission level in OK Grants. The designated Project Director for any Highway Safety Grant MUST be assigned Agency Administrator permission level in the OK Grants system by the organization.

How can I be sure that I have successfully submitted my application for funding consideration?
Look at the current status of your application to see if it reads ‘Application Submitted.’ If so, you have successfully sent it to OHSO for review. If not, you must go to the Application Menu page, click VIEW STATUS OPTIONS under the ‘Change the Status’ heading and then click the APPLY STATUS button under ‘Application Submitted’. You will also receive a confirmation email once your application has been successfully submitted.

How do I know if my application has been approved for funding?
Look at the current status of your application. If it reads ‘Application Awarded’ then congratulations are in order. A status of ‘Application Not Funded’ means your application was approved for funding but sufficient funding was not available for the project. A status of ‘Application Not Approved’ means your application was not approved to be funded. You will also receive a confirmation email advising of the decision, regardless of status.

Can I be both the Agency Administrator/Project Director and Authorized Official for the application?
A user will normally only be assigned one permission level, or “role”, per organization. A person can be assigned as a user in different organizations with different permission levels in each one, but they will normally have only one designated “role” within an organization.

Who can authorize the final grant agreement?
Once the final agreement (contract) has been written, a person having the permission level of Authorized Official of the agency must log into OKGrants and approve the agreement by clicking the Save button on the Certification Page. An Authorized Official cannot be a County Sheriff or Chief of Police.