High Friction Surface Treatment (HFST)

Crashes continue to be one of the leading causes of fatalities and major injuries in the United States, particularly on rural roads. Approximately half of all fatal crashes occur at intersections or on horizontal curves. For horizontal curve incidents, it is often the case that the vehicle speed and curve geometry create a “friction demand” higher than what can be achieved with standard pavement surfaces. Intersection incidents often occur when driver error creates an unexpected need for increased friction demand to serve as a “speed countermeasure.”

A cost effective approach that has been shown to be effective in addressing high “friction demand” locations is the installation of a High Friction Surface Treatment (HFST). High Friction Surface Treatments are pavement surface treatments that are composed of extremely hard, polish- and abrasion-resistant aggregates bonded to the pavement surface that greatly enhance the skid resistance and frictional characteristics of a road surface. HFSTs address three speed-related crash conditions: low friction, marginal friction (further reduced by weather) and friction values not compatible with approach speeds and geometrics.

ATSSA’s High Friction Surface Treatment Council (member login required) works to assist policymakers and practitioners to better understand the impact of friction demand on roadway safety, including the correct selection and implementation of High Friction Surface Treatment to improve safety at high-risk locations. Council members also aim to provide the latest information related to High Friction Surface Treatment that will be the most helpful in the ongoing effort to create safer roadways for the traveling public.


High Friction Surface Treatments

Continuous Pavement Friction Measurement (CPFM)

HFST Site Selection and Installation Guide

Federal Highway Administration
Case Studies on HFST

Learn about case studies on high friction surface treatments (HFST) in the U.S. that were started in the early 2000s….

Case Study – Safety Opportunities in High Friction Surfacing

This “Safety Opportunities in High Friction Surfacing” publication states that roughly half of all fatal crashes occur at intersections or…

Federal Highway Administration
FHWA HFST Information

High friction surface treatments (HFST) are pavement treatments that dramatically and immediately reduce crashes, injuries and fatalities associated with friction…

HFST Installation – Lessons Learned

Many departments of transportation (DOTs) either use or have considered using HFST to improve friction and reduce crashes at critical…

HFST Site Selection Processes for Highway Agencies

In this webinar, held Nov. 16, 2021, three states discussed various approaches to identifying locations that can benefit from HFST….

Federal Highway Administration
Implementing the Safe System Approach Using Pavement Friction Data

To reduce road crash injuries and fatalities, the U.S. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) advocates a Safe System Approach that anticipates…