Traffic Safety Data and Analysis

Crash Reports and Summaries

Vehicle crash data holds a number of keys to improving the safety and mobility of Iowans. By analyzing the data, we can learn how and why crashes occurred and take steps to prevent similar crashes in the future.

Who maintains the data system?
The Iowa Department of Transportation’s Motor Vehicle Division maintains crash data for the state’s roadway system.

crash


What data records are collected?

The crash data system includes details on the following for all crashes meeting the state reporting threshold on all public roadways in Iowa. Iowa's state crash reporting threshold currently requires reporting of any crash involving either at least one fatality, one injury, and/or at least $1,500 property damage crash-wide (all vehicular and nonvehicular property).

  • Crash environment - date, time, crash severity, manner of crash/collision impact, lighting, weather, and surface conditions.
  • Roadway characteristics - road classification, contributing circumstances, and type of roadway junction/feature.
  • Driver details - age, gender, condition, and contributing circumstances.
  • Vehicle descriptors - vehicle configuration, cargo body type, vehicle year, travel direction, vehicle action, and vehicle defect.
  • Injured person information - age, gender, injury status (severity), and occupant protection.
  • Nonmotorist data includes type, location, action, condition, safety equipment, and contributing circumstances.

Iowa’s state crash reporting threshold currently requires reporting of any crash involving either at least one fatality, one injury, and/or at least $1,500 property damage crash-wide (all vehicular and nonvehicular property).

How are the data records collected and what standards are applied?

Crash data records primarily collected by law enforcement personnel utilizing a comprehensive crash form that is available in an electronic and hard-copy format. The vast majority of crash data in Iowa are collected using the Traffic and Criminal System (TraCS) software that contains the Iowa Crash Report, but also enables law enforcement personnel to issue electronic citations, file criminal incident reports, and record vehicle inspections.

The crash data support a wide variety of analytical efforts and research to determine effective methods of reducing crashes, primarily more severe crashes.

The Iowa crash report form is designed to comply with guidelines set forth by the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria (MMUCC). MMUCC provides guidelines for a minimum set of data elements to be collected for each crash.

Iowa traffic crash reporting and definitions follow pertinent American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards listed in: