Mapping the Traffic Crashes in New York

bike crashes

The New York Police Department is challenged with city’s traffic fatality and injury numbers, releasing the data in a PDF format that’s difficult for developers to use. A group called betaNYC has been pushing the cops to make their data machine-readable aligning with NY mayor’s Vision Zero.

One civic-minded citizen named John Krauss has been scraping the data from the monthly PDF releases and making it available to anyone on the NYPD Crash Data Band-Aid. Krauss runs a site called NYC Crashmapper, where you can play around with a map that displays crashes by date, what type of user was involved, and severity of crash. Though  Krauss maps have limitations,  few others have also used Krauss’s data for their own visualizations.

Prof.Wellington from Pratt Institute’s Grad Center for Planning is one among them. His report analysis shows  that 23 percent of New York’s 2013 traffic-related fatalities occurred in just 5 percent of its neighborhoods He also did a map that shows all 2013 bike crashes that resulted in injuries reported to the police, a 3,800-dot visualization that he, a regular bike commuter, calls “terrifying.”Fully 60 percent of the city’s 2013 traffic fatalities took place in neighborhoods with two or fewer deaths. And looking at “bright spots” where there are no deaths might yield other important insights about how to make New Yorkers safer on the street.Wellington has been struck by the intensity of demand for a thoughtful treatment of this data in a city with a growing awareness of traffic safety as a public health issue.

Taking this as a model , there is a possibility that  every state  could take initiative to bringout maps on traffic crashes which would create awareness on traffic safety.

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