Partnership for Analytics Research in Traffic Safety
PARTS, short for Partnership for Analytics Research in Traffic Safety, is a partnership between automakers and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in which participants voluntarily share safety-related data for collaborative safety analysis. The goal of this government-industry initiative, which is operated by an independent third party, is to gain real-world insights into the safety benefits and opportunities of emerging advanced driver assistance systems and automated driving systems.
Current Study: What is the effectiveness of advanced driver assistance systems in real-world scenarios?
Right now, an in-depth analysis is underway involving data from millions of vehicles and crash reports in hopes of gaining better insight into:
- What is the overall effectiveness of ADAS features in reducing fatalities, injuries and crashes?
- What factors influence ADAS feature effectiveness and to what extent?
- What combination of ADAS features contribute to the prevention of fatalities, injuries and crashes?
Automobile manufacturers have submitted vehicle data for approximately 50 million vehicles — 94 different vehicle models from 2015 to 2021 are included. In addition, NHTSA will supply data on police-reported crashes to facilitate analysis. The MITRE Corporation, an independent and not-for-profit organization, will analyze the data sources and provide aggregated, anonymized results by which partners can assess the overall effectiveness of these systems, and benchmark their own vehicles against the overall aggregate average. The ADAS technologies being analyzed are: forward collision warning, forward automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection warning, pedestrian AEB, lane departure warning, lane keeping assistance, lane centering, blind spot warning, and blind spot intervention.
Mission & Vision
Improve traffic safety in an enduring data-sharing partnership by generating unique analytic results that inform action.
Be an authoritative source for real-world, data-driven traffic safety information.
The current study follows a pilot project in 2018 where a group of automobile manufacturers shared data for analysis. The prototype, completed in 2019, assessed the feasibility of the concept and was successful. In January 2020, the U.S. Department of Transportation announced $2.1 million for the program to move forward. The following automakers are currently participating:
- American Honda,
- General Motors,
- Mitsubishi Motors R&D of America,
- Nissan North America,
- Subaru, and
- Toyota Motor North America.
Why did PARTS form?
With today’s speed of innovation, NHTSA recognized the urgency to create new, dynamic approaches for learning more about how to improve safety and reduce the risk of vehicle crashes in real-world environments.
Who can join PARTS?
Currently, all automobile manufacturers can join PARTS. In the future, additional types of stakeholders will be included as the scope of work expands and the partnership matures.
Is PARTS a voluntary partnership?
Yes, participation in the PARTS prototype is voluntary. Partners may choose to end participation at any time.
Is PARTS similar to the FAA’s data-sharing partnership?
PARTS was formed based on the successful model of the Aviation Safety Information Analysis and Sharing (ASIAS) program. For 10 years, the FAA, the aviation industry, and an independent third party (The MITRE Corporation) have been collaborating to improve aviation safety through the program. ASIAS is a public-private partnership whose mission is to share critical information and proactively analyze aviation safety data to discover common, systemic problems, and to inform mitigations. The participants have learned how important it is to create a proactive safety culture where regulators and regulated entities work together within an atmosphere of trust. While the aviation and auto industries are different, NHTSA and automotive stakeholders believed they could adapt ASIAS to meet the unique needs of the auto industry. In 2017, a group of automobile manufacturers joined NHTSA and MITRE to begin exploring how the aviation program might be adapted for automotive transportation. In 2018, PARTS was formed.
How are decisions made on the objective and scope of PARTS analyses?
PARTS Governance Board’s decision-making process is consensus-based, meaning there must be agreement by all PARTS participants before PARTS moves forward with a decision or action. All PARTS participants, whether public or private, are peers, with decisions made by consensus for purposes of the partnership and each PARTS participant receiving one vote.
Will PARTS share the results of their studies?
Yes, the partnership intends to make information public once results become available and, particularly, at the conclusion of each study. Initial results are expected in 2021.
How is PARTS funded and what does it cost to participate?
At the current time, PARTS is 100% funded by USDOT and no contribution of funds is required for an OEM to join PARTS. The funding model may change as the partnership matures.
What is the role of the independent third party?
The role of the independent third party is three-fold: 1) act as the independent convener and program integrator/manager; 2) act as the data steward, providing the secure data environment and infrastructure to protect and manage partner data and results; and 3) lead the technical analytic work, to include ingesting sensitive data from partners, processing it, conducting neutral and unbiased analysis, and providing results in a safe and secure manner.
The MITRE Corporation serves as the independent third party for PARTS. MITRE is a private, non-profit organization that operates Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs) and an independent research program that help government agencies, along with industry, address critical national and global challenges, including those around transportation safety.
What is the role of OEM partners?
Participating OEMs actively shape the direction of the partnership, to include identifying and scoping safety research studies and other projects. OEMs partners contribute data as well as staff time and expertise to assist in the use and interpretation of their data to support analysis. In addition, OEM partners participate in the exploration of new ideas, including proofs of concepts and prototyping, to help inform partnership decisions related to future safety research.
What is the role of USDOT and NHTSA?
USDOT, which NHTSA is part of, funds the partnership and works alongside industry participants to oversee and direct the work of PARTS as part of the PARTS Governance Board, including as co-chair. USDOT’s participation does not provide it with any special decision-making authority during the execution of PARTS. All decisions are made by consensus of the PARTS Governance Board, and NHTSA serves as one voting member on the PARTS Governance Board. The roles of NHTSA and OEMs are of peers within the partnership – each has an equal voice in the strategy, processes and procedures, and overall execution of the partnership.
If you would like to learn more about PARTS or for information on joining the partnership, email PARTS@mitre.org.