As prescribed in Section 6006 of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA), Public Law 102-240 (December 18, 1991), the mission of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics is to compile, analyze, and make accessible information on the Nation's transportation systems; to collect information on intermodal transportation and other areas as needed; and to enhance the quality and effectiveness of the statistical programs of the Department of Transportation (DOT) through research, the development of guidelines, and the promotion of improvements in data acquisition and use.
a. Compiles, analyzes, and publishes a comprehensive set of domestic
and international transportation statistics to provide timely summaries
and totals (including industrywide aggregates and multiyear averages) of
transportation-related information. Ensures statistics are suitable
for conducting cost-benefit studies (including comparisons among individual
transportation modes and intermodal transport systems) and supporting international
negotiations, and include--but are not limited to--information on:
(1) productivity in various parts of the transportation sector;
(2) traffic flows (including freight and commodity flows for all modes);
(3) travel times;
(4) vehicle types, weights, and dimensions;
(5) variables influencing traveling behavior, including choice of transportation mode;
(6) travel costs of intracity commuting and intercity trips;
(7) availability of mass transit and the number of passengers served by each mass transit authority;
(8) frequency of vehicle and transportation facility repairs and other interruptions of transportation service;
(10) collateral damage to the human and natural environment;
(11) the condition of the transportation system and its supporting infrastructure;
(12) revenues and expenditures for the transportation system;
(13) system and safety performance measures; and
(14) transportation system and vehicle construction and manufacturing costs.
b. Establishes and implements a comprehensive, long-term program for the collection and analysis of data relating to the performance of the national transportation system in cooperation with the Office of the Secretary of Transportation, the DOT operating administrations, State and local governments, and other Federal agencies.
c. Issues guidelines for the collection of information by the Department of Transportation required for statistics to be compiled under paragraph 2a in order to ensure that such information is accurate, reliable, relevant, and in a form that permits systematic analysis.
d. Coordinates the collection of information by the Department of Transportation required for statistics to be compiled under paragraph 2a with related information-gathering activities conducted by other Federal departments and agencies and collects appropriate data not elsewhere gathered.
e. Makes the statistics compiled by the Bureau readily accessible to Federal, state, local, and other decision makers and the public (subject to applicable laws and regulations).
f. Identifies information that is needed under paragraph 2a but which is not being collected, reviewing such needs at least annually and making recommendations to appropriate Department of Transportation research officials concerning extramural and intramural research programs to provide such information.
g. Prepares a Transportation Statistics Annual Report for transmittal to the President and the Congress.
h. Makes use of advancing computer technology/software to integrate information from multiple transportation data systems. Utilizes Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and other media to display transportation information in support of DOT policies and programs.
a. The Director of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics reports to, and receives tasking, oversight, and supervision from, the Secretary of Transportation.
b. The Director of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics works closely with the Secretarial Officers, the Administrators of each operating administration and with the directors of other Federal agencies to obtain information required for paragraph 2a and to improve the quality and effectiveness of transportation data resources.
c. The Director of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics works closely with the Director of the Office of Intermodalism in administering responsibilities related to developing, maintaining, and disseminating intermodal transportation data.
d. The Director of the Bureau of Transportation Statistics works closely
with the Advisory Council on Transportation Statistics, which is charged
by ISTEA with advising the Director as to the quality and objectivity of
the Bureau's statistical products.