Tripping and falling is a common occurrence in everyday life, but it can have serious consequences. Every year, thousands of people die due to tripping and falling accidents, making it one of the leading causes of death in the United States. In this article, we’ll explore the statistics behind these deaths, examine the impact of slips, trips, and falls, and discuss how to avoid the risks associated with them.
Examining the Statistics: How Many People Die From Tripping and Falling Each Year?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 29,000 people died from falls in 2018. That works out to about 80 deaths per day or one every 20 minutes. Of those deaths, more than 7,500 were caused by tripping or slipping on stairs or steps.
When broken down by age group, the numbers become even more staggering. The CDC reports that older adults (aged 65 and over) accounted for 87% of all fall-related fatalities in 2018. Meanwhile, children aged 14 or younger accounted for just over 6%.
Internationally, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 37.3 million falls occur each year, resulting in around 646,000 fatalities. The majority of these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, where access to medical care is limited.
The Shocking Reality of Tripping and Falling Fatalities
Falls are the leading cause of injury-related death among adults aged 65 and over, and the second leading cause among children aged 1 to 14. While some of these deaths are accidental, many are due to negligence. In fact, the most common cause of death due to tripping and falling is head injuries, which can be caused by a lack of protective headgear or inadequate safety measures.
In addition to fatalities, falls can also cause severe injuries such as broken bones, spinal cord damage, and traumatic brain injuries. These injuries can lead to long-term complications such as chronic pain, impaired mobility, and cognitive impairment.
Exploring the Impact of Slips, Trips, and Falls
Slips, trips, and falls are a major safety hazard in both homes and workplaces. According to the National Safety Council, slips, trips, and falls account for nearly one-third of all workplace injuries, and they’re responsible for more than 8 million emergency room visits each year. Of those visits, approximately 17,000 result in death.
Certain people are more at risk of slips, trips, and falls than others. Older adults, children, and people with disabilities are particularly vulnerable, as are those who work in hazardous environments such as construction sites or industrial plants. Additionally, certain types of accidents such as stairway falls and ladder falls are more likely to result in serious injury or death.
Uncovering the Cost of Negligence: Tripping and Falling Accidents
In addition to the human cost of tripping and falling accidents, there is also an economic cost. According to the National Safety Council, slips, trips, and falls cost employers more than $70 billion each year in direct costs such as medical expenses, lost wages, and legal fees. Indirect costs such as decreased productivity and increased insurance premiums can add up to an additional $20 billion annually.
There are also legal implications to consider. If a person is injured in a slip, trip, or fall accident, they may be able to file a lawsuit against the property owner or employer if it can be shown that the accident was caused by negligence. In some cases, victims may be able to recover damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Stepping Carefully: Avoiding the Risks of Tripping and Falling Accidents
Fortunately, there are steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of tripping and falling accidents. At home, keep your floors clean and clutter-free, use non-slip mats in bathrooms and other wet areas, and install handrails on stairways. When working, wear appropriate footwear and pay attention to your surroundings.
In public places, look out for uneven surfaces, slippery floors, and obstructions. Be mindful of stairs and escalators, and make sure to hold the handrail when possible. Lastly, if you see a potential hazard, report it immediately to the appropriate authorities.
Tripping and falling accidents can have serious consequences, including death. By understanding the statistics behind these deaths, exploring the impact of slips, trips, and falls, and taking steps to reduce the risks of accidents, we can help ensure that everyone stays safe.
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One thought on “Falling Down: How Many People Die From Tripping and Falling Each Year?”
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