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The National Safety Council eliminates preventable deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the road through leadership, research, education and advocacy. Donate to our cause.
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According to Injury Facts, 161,374 people died from unintentional injury-related deaths in 2016. Most unintentional injury-related deaths occur off the job, often when least expected – during a vacation, while doing chores at home or while driving across town.
NSC encourages everyone to be aware of hazards related to leisure and recreational activities, take proper safety precautions and sign up for NSC Monthly News. You'll get timely and useful blogs, seasonal safety tips, survey results, legislative updates, event information and lots of other safety-related news. Here, in order, are the top causes of unintentional injury and death in homes and communities:
In 2011, poisonings overtook motor vehicle crashes for the first time as the leading cause of unintentional-injury-related death for all ages combined. Poisoning deaths are caused by gases, chemicals and other substances, but prescription drug overdose is by far the leading cause. Learn more about
this epidemic and other poisons in the home.
No one wakes up thinking they will lose a loved one in a car crash, but motor vehicle crashes are the second leading cause of unintentional-injury-related death overall. Impaired driving, distracted driving, speeding and inexperience can cause a life to be cut short in the blink of an eye.
Everyone has a role in making our roads safer.
In 2016, 34,673 people died in falls, according to
Injury Facts. Falling is the third leading cause of unintentional-injury-related death over all age groups, but it's the #1 cause of death for those 65 and older. The good news: Aging, itself, does not cause falls.
Learn what you can do to help protect older loved ones.
Suffocation is the fourth leading cause of unintentional injury-related death over all age groups, and
choking on food or other objects is a primary cause. Suffocation is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death for people 87 and older.
Mechanical suffocation is the #1 cause of death for infants. Learn prevention and rescue tips.
Not including boating incidents, about 10 people drown every day. It's the fifth leading cause of unintentional-injury-related death over all ages, and the #1 cause of death for children ages 1 to 4, mostly due to children falling into pools or being left alone in bathtubs.
Learn how to keep yourself and your family safe.
Fire is the sixth leading cause of unintentional injury-related death over all ages. About 2,646 deaths were caused by burns and injuries related to fire in 2015. Often fires start at night, when family members are asleep. A working smoke alarm will cut the chances of dying in a fire in half.
Learn more fire safety tips here.
Disasters are front-page news even though lives lost are relatively few compared to other unintentional-injury-related deaths. Weather-related disasters claim hundreds of lives per year. NSC encourages families to learn all they can about
emergency preparedness, and always have an
emergency kit on hand.
The National Safety Council wants to help you stay safe in all areas of your life. We have researchers and statisticians working all the time to keep you up to date on the best ways to keep yourself and your family safe.
Community leaders now can offer free NSC training, Surviving an Active Shooter Event. Organize training in your community or find a class nearby.
Minutes can determine the outcome of a life-and-death situation.
Are you more likely to be killed in a car crash or overdose on prescription drugs? Is it really that rare to be struck by lightning?
Quarterly magazine helps keep workers and families safe and healthy off the job.
The National Safety Council is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization.