Iowa’s Texting-While-Driving Ban Not Reducing Crashes, Hard To Enforce

Iowa’s law banning texting while driving is failing to reduce road crashes, and officers seldom enforce it because of legal restrictions, an IowaWatch investigation shows. Crash history reports from the Iowa Department of Transportation show that since the Iowa Legislature enacted it in July 2011, the law has not decreased cell-phone related crashes.

Raw Data: April 2014 Survey About College Debt, Job Prospects

IowaWatch survey of students at the University of Iowa, Iowa State University and University of Northern Iowa about college debt and concerns about getting a job after graduation. Scroll down the document to see the raw data. The overall survey’s margin of error is plus or minus 3.8 percentage points. Margins of error increase for questions that fewer than 671 participants answered. RETURN TO MAIN STORY

Database: Iowa Farm Fatalities

Farm deaths accounted for more than 30 percent of all occupational fatalities in Iowa between 2001 and 2011, an IowaWatch analysis of data from the Iowa Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation program shows. Read more about farm fatalities and regulation in these reports:

Matter of Seconds: Farm Safety Regulation Hard to Come By In Iowa, by Sarah Hadley/IowaWatch
Matter of Seconds: OSHA Educates More Than It Enforces, by Robert Holly/The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting
Matter of Seconds: As Deaths Add Up, Farmers ‘Walk the Grain’ Unprotected, by Robert Holly/The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting

In analyzing the data, we focused on injuries that occurred while farmers, farm workers, farm family members and commercial grain bin workers were on-site. Fatalities that occurred during transportation were not included in the Farm-Related Fatalities category. The data includes farm-related fatality reports from 2001 through 2011 as well as charts illustrating trends in the data, such as the number of farm-related deaths as a percentage of the total occupational fatalities. Lauren Mills/IowaWatch

Database: Iowa’s Opportunity Gap

U.S. Census data show where black and Latino Iowans have fallen behind white Iowans when it comes to income, jobs, home ownership and high school and college degrees. IowaWatch obtained an analysis of 50 years of U.S. Census data from the Colorado-based public service journalism organization I-News, a member of the Investigative News Network to which IowaWatch belongs.

Database: Iowa Levee Inspections

Browse this IowaWatch database of levee inspections in Iowa. An IowaWatch story says Iowa towns are at risk because of spotty inspections and an inability to respond efficiently to flaws that exist in some levees.

Databases: Drugs and Iowa Children — Updated

Between 2003 and 2011, more than 11,150 children were found to have illicit drugs in their system, information from the Department of Human Services shows. An interactive IowaWatch map shows you how bad the problem is in your Iowa county.

Guns on Campus: A poll of University of Iowa Students

A survey by a University of Iowa journalism class found UI students generally feel safe on campus and support the current campus weapons ban. The survey also looked into how students felt about proposed federal bans on high-capacity ammunition clips and semi-automatic rifles. The poll was conducted by the Advanced Reporting and Writing: Polling Literacy and Public Affairs Journalism class taught by Stephen Berry, an associate professor of Journalism and Mass Communication and co-founder of David W. Moore, former vice president of the Gallup Organization and a senior editor with the Gallup Poll for 13 years, assisted with the study. Read more about the findings in an article by IowaWatch’s Robert Maharry.