Injury Prevention – A Closer Look

The Insurance industry will be thrilled to tell you that you are always at risk. Injuries are a possibility and we all know it. Because of the costs involved in caring for people who experience an injury, no matter where it is, these things are tracked.

Most likely cause of death

In the USA, from the point a person is a year old until the age of 44, the most common cause of death is an unintentional injury. After the age of 44, it slips down, but only to third place. It is not until we reach the age of 65+ that there are 6 causes of death above unintentional injury,

It makes sense then that we do as much as we can to prevent unintentional injury, but how does it happen and who is responsible for it?

Unintentional Deaths

The starting point is to categorize unintentional death. Here again, age factors in and throws up some surprising details. Children less than 5 are more likely to drown than they are to be involved in a traffic accident, but the second cause is traffic. Those positions reverse for children aged 5 to 9. In fact, traffic remains the number one cause of death for all young people until they reach 25 where poisoning becomes the primary cause with traffic the secondary. That changes when we reach 65 when not surprisingly it becomes falls.


Once we understand the causes, it becomes possible to educate against them. Little children can be taught road safety from the moment they can understand. But there is more to it than education. Cars are being made safer. When a car manufacturer ran a campaign to suggest their brand was rated this highest in safety tests, their sales increased.

Campaigns to encourage the wearing of seatbelts have been so successful most adults automatically use seat belts. This is age-related. People over 50 might ride in the back of a car without a seatbelt. People under 50 are more like to reach for the belt.

Isolating how many traffic accidents occurred under the influence of alcohol or other substances which impair reactions had a twofold effect. Firstly, the allowable level of alcohol in the bloodstream was dropped to hundredths of a part per litre, and secondly, the issue became notes as a public concern featured in advertisements and public education. It is notable now, TV advertising against drunk driving focuses on the idea that buzzed driving still equals drunk driving.

We are no longer addressing the topic, we are now looking at nuances of the topic, it is a major step forward.

“Prevention is better than cure”

Work in preventing accidents is hard to measure, you can measure a drop in accidents that take place, but it is impossible to measure how many people were not involved in some sort of mishap because they are aware.

Regardless, this is something the U.S. is committed to and national bodies continue to investigate and refine safety measures.

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