Data Visualization

Blog of the Data Visualization & Communication Course at OSB-AUB

This is my favorite part about analytics: Taking boring flat data and bringing it to life through visualization” John Tukey

Decoding Traffic Accidents: A 2019 Snapshot from France

Decoding Traffic Accidents: A 2019 Snapshot from France

Car accidents remain a significant concern across the globe, negatively affecting many lives daily, which shows the need for continuous efforts in ensuring road safety. Annually, the toll of car accidents in France highlights a critical need for detailed analysis and proactive measures that would help tackle this issue and mitigate the risks that citizens, whether drivers, passengers, or pedestrians, face daily. France has 55% more deaths per inhabitant than Germany in 2019. Specifically, France experienced 52 deaths per million inhabitants due to traffic accidents, compared to Germany’s 34.


The proposed solutions will target an audience in charge such as government agencies related to transportation and safety sectors, road safety advocacy groups, and urban planners and infrastructure developers. Government agencies can leverage our findings to inform policy and safety measures. The urban planners and infrastructure developers will be provided with data-driven directions to design safer roads and intersections, focusing on the weak points of where accidents are most likely to occur. Lastly, road safety advocacy groups will be able to utilize our insights to focus on effectively enhancing their campaigns.


Geographic Patterns of Accidents in France:

This data paints a detailed picture of where accidents are most frequent within France. Certain regions, perhaps due to higher traffic volumes or challenging driving conditions, show elevated accident rates. This geographical analysis is pivotal in directing safety measures to where they are needed most.





Seasonal Trends:
Road safety is a critical issue that affects communities across France. In 2019, these incidents inflicted injuries and claimed lives which raised serious concerns about the factors contributing to their occurrence. From the severity of injuries sustained by different road users to the risks associated with specific driving maneuvers, the data displays a concerning picture. Moreover, the difference in outcomes for those wearing seatbelts and helmets versus those who do not bring to light the vital role of safety measures. This section will explore the problem of traffic accidents in France, using visual evidence to illustrate the scope and impact of this pressing issue.


We saw more car crashes in the summer, especially in June and July. This is probably because lots of people are traveling for their summer breaks, and there are many visitors who don’t know the roads well. Summer is also a time for big parties and festivals where people might drink alcohol, which can lead to more accidents. Roads get really busy, and sometimes safety rules are forgotten, which makes it more likely for accidents to happen.





Fatal Outcomes by Road User Type:


In 2019, the landscape of traffic accidents in France presented a cruel picture, particularly in terms of injury severity. As our visual analysis reveals, drivers constituted most of the affected individuals, accounting for 70% of deaths, while passengers and pedestrians accounted for 15%. The data indicates that drivers are most often killed underscoring the considerable risk associated with driving. Pedestrians, though fewer, face a considerable rate of serious rate of deaths and injuries per accident, due to the lack of protective barriers during accidents. This information underscores the need for robust safety measures and targeted interventions to protect all road users.





Weather Conditions:


It is well known that weather can have a major impact on road situations. It is something logical where accident occurrences are challenging to control, especially in extreme weather conditions. Since the majority of accidents happen in normal conditions (due to normal weather being more probable than other conditions) it is an advantage to us as we can control other conditions.




The Life-Saving Role of Safety Equipment:

The analysis starkly shows the difference safety equipment can make. In France, the use of seat belts and helmets is shown to drastically reduce the severity of injuries in accidents. This serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of wearing safety gear.


  • Seat Belts Save Lives: According to the World Health Organization, the use of safety belts by front-seat passengers reduces the risk of fatal injuries by 45 to 50 percent. For back-seat occupants, the risk of death and serious injuries is reduced by 25 percent. In France, since 1973, wearing seat belts in the front seat is mandatory. Compliance with this law varies between 60 to 90% depending on the road type. If seat belts were not worn by front seat occupants, there would be a 55% increase in fatalities. Conversely, if seat belts were consistently used by all occupants in a vehicle, fatalities could be reduced by an additional 30%.
  • Helmets for Bikers: Motorcycle helmets are 67% effective in preventing brain injuries. Riders without helmets are more than three times as likely to suffer a brain injury compared to those who wear helmets.
  • Rules and Wearing Safety Gear:
    1. Police Enforcement: Police play a key role in ensuring compliance with safety gear regulations. Through traffic stops, checkpoints, and regular patrolling, they check if drivers and riders are wearing seat belts and helmets, as required by law. This enforcement encourages consistent use of safety gear.
    2. Awareness and Penalties: Alongside enforcement, awareness campaigns about the importance of safety gear and the penalties for non-compliance further encourage adherence to these rules. Understanding the life-saving benefits of seat belts and helmets motivates more people to use them.


Left vs. Right Hand Turns:

Left-hand turns appear to be particularly hazardous, leading to more accidents compared to right-hand turns. This finding could influence traffic management policies and the design of intersections to enhance driver safety.
  • Left Turns Are Riskier: In France, during 2019, car accidents often happened more during left-hand turns than right-hand turns. This is because left turns are usually trickier. Here’s why:
      1. More Traffic to Watch: When you turn left, you have to look out for cars coming both ways. This means you have to check more places before you turn.
      2. Harder to See: Sometimes it’s harder to see if it’s safe to turn left. Cars coming straight towards you can be hard to judge, especially if they’re moving fast.
      3. Crossing Paths: Turning left means crossing the path of oncoming cars. This is riskier than turning right, where you don’t cross traffic.
      4. Timing is Tough: You need good timing to turn left safely. If you turn too soon or too late, it can cause an accident.



To wrap this up, let us take a closer look at the lessons we learned from looking at car crashes in France for 2019. From what we’ve seen, it appears that doing some simple things can help keep us safe on the roads.


To begin with, seatbelts are amazing. They keep so many people from getting hurt if there’s a crash. It’s like having a superhero’s shield right in your car. And then there’s the weather. Driving can be difficult in the rain, snow, or even too much sun, which may result in accidents. We must be extra careful when the weather is bad.


We also observed that driving behavior, such as speeding or lack of focus, can have a significant impact. We all share the road, so we all need to drive like we care about the person in the next car or walking across the street.


Now, what do we do with all this? We talk about it, at school, at work, and at home. We make sure everyone knows how important it is to drive safely, wear seatbelts, and watch the road. We make sure the police are watching out for drivers who cause a risk to others, and we call on local communities to install improved streetlights and signage.


But there’s more we can do, too. We’ve got three big solutions:
  • Better Roads: We need roads that are easy to drive on, with clear signs and safe spots to walk and cross.
  • Stronger Traffic Laws: Rules that make sense and that everyone knows, ensuring that no one is speeding or messing around.
  • Awareness Campaigns: Let’s use entertaining and memorable methods to educate people about traffic safety.


Let’s make this report start a conversation that keeps going. Every time we get into a car or cross the street, let’s remember what we learned. If we all do our part, with better roads, clear rules, and good tips on staying safe, we can make our roads places where everyone gets to where they’re going, no trouble.


Team members: Mahmoud Jachi, Ali Korkomaz, Mehdi Atris, Taima Kelani, Hussein Dakroub, Mohamad Ayoub


Power Paradigm: Charting Africa’s Journey to Sustainable Electrification

Power Paradigm: Charting Africa’s Journey to Sustainable Electrification


The transformative threshold of Africa. Getting Africa on-line is not all about pulling together the disparate elements, but that this approach can be truly inspirational for the innovative technologies which shun conventional ‘hard-wired’ powers and embrace sustainable energy delivery. Despite all that, flickering of the previous shadows in some dimmed-down villages is the sign of change. Nevertheless, the narrative goes beyond the question of access and moves even further into green energy as light for illuminating our environment which is being over polluted at an unheard pace. This transformation encapsulates a dual ambition: clean and green lighting to homes, schools and factories, big and small, in this continent’s crowded cities and small villages under clear day and night skies. During the course of our discourse on details and stories surrounding Africa’s energy map, we will analyze more than just statistical aspects of electric power availability between towns and villages and the recent movement towards renewables – from darkness to sustainable light, which portrays an illuminating future.

We can also check the disparity between urban and rural areas in Africa.

Our initiative seeks to illuminate the African continent by expanding access to electricity, with the firm commitment to SDG 13.2—integrating climate change measures into national policies, strategies, and planning. We aim to electrify the future of Africa through the adoption of renewable energy solutions, ensuring that every watt powering development is also protecting our planet. By fostering the use of clean, renewable energy sources, we are not only turning on the lights but also paving the way for a sustainable and resilient energy ecosystem across African communities.

Increasing electric power consumption (kWh per capita) in Africa does not inherently lead to a rise in CO2 emissions (metric tons per capita) when we strategically incorporate renewable energy sources. By integrating solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal power into the energy mix, Africa can satisfy its growing energy needs while mitigating carbon footprint. This sustainable approach aligns with the global ambition to combat climate change, embodying the spirit of SDG 13.2. It demonstrates that economic growth and environmental stewardship can coexist, powering development that honors our collective commitment to a greener future.

We can see from this graph that in the European Union, increasing electric power consumption per capita did not lead to an increase in CO2 emissions per capita. This is due to the fact that they have increased their reliance on renewables, shown in the following graph.

In conclusion, the imperative for Africa is not just to electrify but to do so sustainably. Green energy solutions offer a pathway to empower the continent with the electricity it needs, without compromising the health of our planet. The adoption of renewable energy technologies in Africa represents a convergence of developmental aspirations with ecological responsibility. By harnessing the abundant renewable resources available, from solar to wind to hydro, Africa can leapfrog traditional, carbon-intensive energy models, setting a global example of sustainable growth. This approach not only addresses immediate energy needs but also aligns with long-term climate goals, fulfilling our collective responsibility to future generations.