Earlier this year, the National Safety Council (NSC) released the 2014 version of its Injury Facts publication. For almost a century, the National Safety Council has used Injury Facts to report on safety statistics around the country. This year’s publication was significant in many ways, but the specific aspect we want to focus on in this post is fall injuries.
The Statistics Are Astonishing
According to the NSC data:
- Falls among the elderly increased 112 percent since 1999.
- Falls are the leading cause of unintentional injury deaths for people age 65 and older. According to the latest data, 21,649 people age 65 or older lost their lives due to falls in a single year.
- Falls are a leading cause of death in every age group beginning at age 35, and the third most common cause of unintentional injury death overall.
- Falls are the leading cause of unintentional injury for every age group except 15- to 24-year-olds, for whom it is the second leading cause of unintentional injury. To put this in perspective, 9,256,761 people suffered non-fatal injuries from fall accidents in a single year compared to 2,686,580 people who suffered non-fatal injuries in motor vehicle crashes. That’s almost three and a half times more injuries from falls than vehicle accidents!
Now the question becomes, why do these statistics matter?
Why These Statistics Are Reported
These statistics aren’t just important to the child who slips and falls down a flight of stairs at a West Des Moines school, a hurried young parent who slips on a wet floor at Dahl’s, or an older person who falls on an uneven surface at an Altoona restaurant. They are important to all of us because they help raise awareness of this serious injury risk, which we hope in turn will help prevent future fall accidents.
Please share this post on Facebook or Twitter to help educate others about the serious risks of fall accidents so that, together, we can keep our friends and family safe from this serious danger.