Crash Query - App Overview
This article provides an overview of the Crash Query application, its purpose, and the outputs that can be generated in the application
Greg Olsen avatar
Written by Greg Olsen
Updated over a week ago

The Crash Query application allows users to run custom crash queries and displays the results in real-time. Users can view the results of their queries using a GIS map interface, tables, custom graphs and charts, or downloadable CSV and PDF reports. The Crash Query application is broken into 8 sections: Date Extents, Map, Advanced Search Bar, Crash Flyout, Metrics, Chart Builder, Raw Table, and Reports Download. Each of these sections will be discussed in more detail below.


The map section of Crash Query displays the currently filtered data in either a satellite, or map overlay. The map view will display the crashes in either a heat map, or a map point view. By default the map will display a heat map which provides a more complete summary of crash density, with the more crash-dense areas displayed in dark blue. 

(The heat map view of the Crash Query map displaying all pedestrian involved crashes for a given county.)

Crash query will automatically switch from the heat map view, to the cluster view, and a satellite map, when the map zooms in, allowing greater detail in specific crash locations. In cluster view, crashes occupying the same geolocation are grouped into crash clusters, and color coded according to the most severe crash in the cluster. The number on the cluster indicates the number of crashes contained in the cluster. Clicking on a cluster will zoom the map to that location, and breakout all crashes contained in the cluster.

(A heat map view of the Crash Query map, zoomed in to reveal crash clusters.)

Hide Crashes

Additionally, users can hide all of the crashes on a map using the Hide Crashes button, located at the top of the screen, next to the total number of crashes being displayed. This can be useful when configuring a query, or zooming in on a map to a specific location.

(The Show/Hide crash icon, with all crashes

Polygon/Radius Filter

Users can scroll, zoom, and rotate the map to see the data they are interested in. As search terms are entered into the advanced search bar, the map updates in real-time to reflect the current search criteria. Users can also filter the map using our polygon, and radius filters to define geo boundaries on the map.

(A custom geo boundary filter applied to the map using the polygon tool.)

Measure Tool

Users can use the Measure Tool to measure distances on the map. Click the Measure Tool icon, then click points on the map. The measure tool will measure the distance on the map between the points (Note: you can measure different shapes by clicking on the map to add more measurement points). The total distance will be displayed at the top of the map in both Feet and Miles.

(A stretch of road, measuring 6,301.8 ft, or 1.194 miles)

Filter to View

When zoomed into a location on the map, users can use the Filter to View button to set a filter around the area of the map currently displayed.

Zoom to Extents

Additionally, when zoomed in or out, users can use the Zoom to Extents button to return the map to display the current filter area (zooming in or out).

Download Map

Users can also use the Download Map button to download an image file of the current map display.

Map Settings

In the Map Settings, users can customize various map settings, including visualizations, zoom controls, and layers.


Users can manually toggle between the heat map, and a map point views if desired by clicking on the gear icon located under the map zoom controls. In the map point view, each crash is represented by a dot on a map, color coded according to severity. There is no grouping or clustering of crashes in the map point view. These settings will be saved, and will be applied to all map interfaces each time the user logs in.

(The map settings view of a given county. Note that the map has been changed to display dots rather than the heatmap)

Zoom Controls

Under the zoom controls, users can toggle the auto-zoom, and switch to satellite setting. When enabled, Auto-zoom will automatically zoom the map in or out to match the extents of the available data. This can help users zoom to a specific location, or view a given subset of the crash data. When disabled, the user will have manual control over all map zooming.

When enabled, the Switch to Sattelite feature will automatically toggle the map view to a satellite view when zoomed in close on the map. Inversely, the map will automatically toggle to a map view when zoomed out.


The Layers function allows users to toggle on or off various boundary layers on the map. Users can choose to draw either City, County, or Region/District boundaries on the map, and customize the color of the boundary line.

When enabled, the corresponding boundary layer will be visibly drawn on the map in the selected color.

(A given county, with the City boundary layer turned on, and drawn in orange)

Advanced Search Bar

The Advanced Search Bar allows users to refine their Query search by filtering by any datapoint in the available crash data. This allows users to filter by crash attributes (first harmful event, manner of collision, etc), vehicle attributes (vehicle type, vehicle maneuver, etc.), occupant attributes (severity, number of occupants, etc.), and even roadway and location attributes (roadway functional class, city, county, route, block of route, etc.).

(The Advanced Search bar for a given city, filtering for all crashes on the given extents of a city block.)

When more than five filters are present in the Advanced Search Bar, a Hide Filters option will be displayed in the Search Bar. Clicking this will hide the filters, and collapse the search bar. The Search Bar can then be expanded by clicking the Show Filters button.

(The advanced search bar, with the Hide Filters option available (top), and the advanced search bar with the filters hidden (bottom))

To learn more about the Advanced Search Bar, see our Advanced Search Bar article.

Crash Flyout

Clicking on a crash in the map point view or in the raw table, will display the crash flyout.  The Crash Flyout provides an in-depth analysis of a specific crash, including a Google Streetview of the crash location, crash, vehicle, and occupant level data, and a link out to any external documents available for that crash (e.g. collision report pdf, available images from the crash, or any other external resources that are available).

(The Stats Sidebar displayed for a crash selected from the Raw Table tab.)


The Metrics tab displays a detailed breakdown of crash attributes that meet the current search criteria for the query. The first column of the Metrics table indicates the crash attribute, with the second column indicating the total number of crashes in the current search criteria that match the attribute. If available, a third column will indicate the percentage of crashes that match that attribute. Any attributes that have a value of zero will not be displayed in the Metrics tab.

Users can use the Metrics Tab to explore data related to the crash, click on any metric to add it as a filter to the current Query. When clicked, that metric will appear in the Advanced Search Bar, and the map, Metrics, Chart Builder, and Raw Table tabs will update accordingly.

(The Metrics Tab displaying the vehicle maneuver attribute metric, and part of the manner of collision attribute for all filtered crashes.)

Users can customize the metrics they would like displayed on each query. Any crash attribute available in the Dataset can be selected, and added to the Metrics tab. Any data contained in the Metrics tab will be included in any Crash Reports generated from the Query.

As with the Advanced Search Bar, any metrics selected for display will be saved when saving a Query.

Chart Builder

Users can use the Chart Builder to create and download custom bar charts, stacked and grouped bar charts, line charts, pie charts, and pivot tables. Users can select from available measures and groupings to easily visualize any data available in the current Query. Each chart type can be downloaded as either a PNG image (bar, stacked bar, grouped bar, line, and pie), or as a CSV (pivot table).

Charts are saved with any Query, and can be easily referenced or downloaded from previously saved Crash Queries.

For more information on the Chart Builder, see our Crash Query - Chart Builder article.

(Using the Chart Builder to build a grouped bar chart displaying the cost of alcohol related crashes, grouped by county, displaying the top 10.)

Raw Table

The Raw Table tab provides users with a raw table of all data contained in the current query. Users can customize the columns of data that appear, and download the table in a CSV format.

(The Raw Table tab of Crash Query.)

Crash Reports

Crash Query comes with a pre-built Crash Summary Report and Comparison Report, which can be used to export the results of your query in an easy-to-share PDF, or printed report. Reports include a summary of the report parameters (Report title, date created, created by, date range of report), the filters applied to generate the report, as well as any data contained in the Metrics tab of the current Query. 

For more information on Crash Reports, see our Crash Query - Crash Summary Report, and Crash Query - Comparison Report articles.

(A Comparison Report for bicyclist crashes comparing two, three year periods. This report indicates a 42% reduction of serious crashes, a 33% reduction in fatal crashes, and a $34.2m reduction in crash costs.)

View/Modify Date Extents

When conducting a Crash Query, it is easy to see the date range of crash data being displayed. By checking the Date Extents, located in the top right corner of the screen, you can see what dates of data are displayed in your Query.

To modify the dates, click on the Date Extents in the menu bar, and select the date range you would like to include in your query.

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