Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Death by Injury: The Storyboard

If you ever wondered how many Americans are killed by firearms each year, then the new Injury Mortality Data Visualization is for you. With a few clicks of the mouse, you too can be an expert on death by injury "mechanism" (poisoning, motor vehicle, firearm, drowning, falling, burning, etc.) and "intent" (accident, suicide, homicide, or legal intervention), by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin.

Although the number of firearm deaths in the United States climbed from 28,874 in 1999 to 33,599 in 2014, the rate of death was the same in both years—10.31 deaths per 100,000 population. Firearms ranked third as a mechanism of injury death in 2014, after poisoning (51,966) and motor vehicles (33,736). In 1999, motor vehicle deaths were in first place, firearms second, and poisoning third. Poisoning claimed the number-two position in 2004 and rose to number one in 2008 as deaths by poisoning (i.e. drug overdoses) more than doubled in the 1999 to 2014 time period. The death rate from poisoning climbed from 7.07 to 16.19 per 100,000 population during those years.

The firearm death rate is greatest among Black men aged 15 to 24, at 73.06 deaths per 100,000 population—more than seven times higher than the overall rate. The poisoning death rate is greatest among non-Hispanic White men aged 25 to 44, at 46.35 deaths per 100,000 population—almost three times higher than the rate for the population as a whole.

Source: National Center for Health Statistics, Injury Mortality: United States, 1999–2014

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