Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Interactive safety statistic data

Jason Foster and I have been looking at media representations of occupational injury. Coverage tends to be episodic and framed such that injuries and fatalities are viewed as “freak accidents” for which no one is responsible and about which nothing can be done.

An interesting project I heard about this week out of the US dynamically and visually tracks fatalities in the construction industry. This presentation of injury data allows instructors, operators and apprentices to see and read about fatalities in their own city or region.

It also visually demonstrates that fatalities are not rare or isolated events, but are part of a pattern, with startlingly high numbers. This particular project combines several data sources to generate its map. The screen cap on the top right doesn't really convey how dynamic the map is (it allows zooming, each pin can be clicked for detailed information and there are maps for each year).

This kind of approach might be a way for governments to better present information around injuries and get around the filtering and framing that occurs when relying upon media reports to convey injury information.

-- Bob Barnetson

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