WLF Wrongful Death Attorney Goes Over the Grim Statistics
According to a report published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 136,053 people were killed in accidents in the United States in 2014 (the last year for which complete data are available). That is 5.2% of the total deaths that occurred in that year. This figure has remained in the same range for several years.
Accidents, sometimes referred to as unintentional injuries, are the fourth leading cause of fatalities among people of ages 1 to 44, after heart diseases, cancer and chronic respiratory diseases. Different types of accidents that can cause death include motor vehicle crashes, unintentional poisoning, slip and fall, burning, drowning, electrocution, dog bite, sports accidents, and being injured by sharp, heavy or hot objects.
Of the different types of accident deaths, the lion’s share goes to motor vehicle accident deaths, unintentional poisoning deaths, and unintentional fall deaths. Here is look at the most common causes of accidental deaths in the US:
- Motor vehicle accidents:
For many years, motor vehicle accidents have been the leading cause of accidental deaths in the United States. In 2015, a total of 35,092 people were killed in motor vehicles accidents. The figure was slightly higher at 35,675 in 2014. That is 26.22% of all accidental deaths and 1.36% of all deaths in that year.
Motor vehicle crash statistics paint a dire picture. In addition to the thousands killed, an additional 2.35 million Americans are injured or disabled annually. Of those killed, more than 1,600 are children under the age of 15 and nearly 8,000 are teenage drivers. Road crashes are also the leading cause of death of U.S. citizens traveling in foreign countries.
A majority of people killed in motor vehicle crashes are the drivers of the vehicles involved in the crash. A total of 16,454 drivers (46.12% of all motor vehicle accident fatalities) were killed in 2014. In the same year, 5,751 other occupants of vehicles (16.12%), 4,586 motorcyclists (12.85%), 4,884 pedestrians (13.69%), 726 pedacyclists (2.04%) and 274 others were killed. Data from the preceding years show that the number of motor vehicle accident fatalities has been falling in recent years. From 1994 to 2007, the number of fatalities stayed above 41,000.
Different types of motor vehicle accidents that result in fatalities include rear-end collision, head-on collision, side-impact collision, side sweep collision, vehicle rollover, single-car crash, multi-vehicle pile-ups, and hit-and-run accident.
Causes of fatal motor vehicle accidents include distracted driving (such as text-messaging while driving), driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol and/or drugs, fatigued driving, brake failure, speeding, reckless driving, running red lights and stop signs, vehicle malfunction, tire blowouts, improper turning, tailgating, driving the wrong way, road rage, bad weather conditions (ice, snow, rain), and bad road conditions (potholes, furrows).
- Unintentional poisoning deaths:
Unintentional poisoning was the second overall leading cause of accidental deaths. The number of Americans that fell prey to unintentional poisoning in 2014 was 38,851. That is 28.5% of all accidental deaths and 1.48% of all deaths in that year.
Poisoning can be defined as the inhalation, absorption, ingestion, injection or contact with a toxic substance. Nearly all unintentional poisoning deaths in the US are caused by drugs, most of which result from abuse of prescription or illegal drugs.
- Unintentional Falls:
Unintentional slip and fall is the third leading cause of accident deaths in the United States. The number of Americans that died in unintentional fall accidents in 2014 was 31,959. That is 23.49% of all accident deaths and 1.22% of all deaths in that year.
One out of every five falls causes a serious injury. Falls are the leading cause of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and hip fractures. Every year, 2.8 million people sustain fall-related injuries, and more than 800,000 of them are hospitalized – 300,000 because of hip fractures.
Have you lost family member in an accident? If you suspect that the accident was the result of another party’s negligence, then you may be eligible for wrongful death damages. Consult with an experienced wrongful death attorney to find out whether you have a viable claim against the liable party.
Last Updated: 01-09-2017