Data Analysis of Manhattan NYC Motor Vehicle Accidents

Posted on Mar 18, 2022

The skills the author demonstrated here can be learned through taking Data Science with Machine Learning bootcamp with NYC Data Science Academy.


Hundreds and even thousands of deaths have happened over the years in NYC. To lessen the amount of fatalities, NYC implemented the data driven Vision Zero. Vision Zero is an agenda from de Blasio’s administration, implemented in 2014,  that sought to eliminate traffic deaths and injuries within a decade.Operates around the belief that traffic related injuries and death is unacceptable and shouldn’t happen. City agencies have undertaken 273 initiatives in engineering, education, enforcement, and legislation (34 per year on average)  since Vision Zero was implemented.

The Vision Zero Task Force consists of the following:

  • City Hall
  • Department of Transportation
  • Law Department
  • MTA
  • Police Department
  • And many others

Dataset is taken from NYC OpenData and is provided by the NYPD.  1.9 million entries for all five boroughs from June 2012- present day. A police report is required to be filled out when someone is injured or killed, or when there is at least $1000 worth of damage. Analysis was done from 2013-2021 since 2012 or 2022 isn’t complete.

Project Objective

The project objective is to see how Manhattan traffic casualties and motor accidents have progressed from 2013- 2021 as a result of Project Zero and display the findings on an R Shiny Dashboard. There are a couple of important dates/events that had a huge impact on the following statistics and visualizations.

Important Dates/Events:

  • 2014:  Vision Zero
  • 2015: Speed/red light cameras
  • 2015: 25 mph enforcement
  • 2015: New bike paths every     year.
  • 2018: More cameras and upgrades to bike network
  • 2020: Covid Pandemic
  • 2021: NYC reopens

Analysis of Casualities

Figure 1,  Data Showing Accidents Per Year Manhattan


  • We see here that the accidents from 2013-2015 exceed 40,000
  • 2015: we saw the major changes as stated above and saw a a drastic drop in accidents 
  • 2018: we see another drastic drop.
  • 2020: covid obviously explained the very low output of accidents
  • 2021: it increased a little but most likely due to nyc opening up 

Figure 2, Data Showing Fatalities Per year


Figure  3, Data Showing Injuries Per Year

Here we see a steady decline in injuries from 2013-2019 and a very sharp decline in 2020 but it bounced back very quickly in 2021.

Figure 4, Data Showing Casualties Per Accident in Manhattan

From 2013-2019, we see the casualties per accident range from anywhere between 0.15 to 0.2. This means it took about 5-6 accidents for a casualty occur. In 2020 and 2021 we see a very sharp spike and doubling in casualties, 0.33 and 0.41 respectively.


Now it's time to see the impact Vision Zero has had on certain neighborhoods

Area from 39th-42nd St and 8th Ave

Area between 57th-60th and 2nd Ave



The absolute number of accidents, fatalities and injuries have significantly gone down from 2013-2021. Even if we remove 2020 and 2021, numbers still have gone down. However, the lethality of accidents have gone up significantly. Was it because of Covid? More research has to be done Impact of Vision Zero looks to be very positive so far, but the rise of accidents and lethality in 2021 looks concerning. One thing has to be mentioned though is that NYC notoriously has traffic so Vision Zero initiatives was probably designed for the congestion. In 2020 and 2021, because there were less cars on the road, traffic moved significantly faster so perhaps the lethality could be explained by less congestion.

If I had more time

  • Find more data prior to 2013.
  • Take a closer look at the  progression of deaths and injuries of pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists.
  • Compare and contrast  the other boroughs’ progress from the Vision Zero agenda.
  • Make an interactive hotzone map of accidents where viewers can see the progress of all individual areas within Manhattan from 2013-2021.
  • Try to see if certain areas need more attention.

About Author

Kenny Bagaloyos

Data Scientist with six years of experience in automotive and direct sales. Graduated with a BS in Business Management from Rutgers University in 2019.
View all posts by Kenny Bagaloyos >

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