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Poisonings Surpass Car Crashes as Leading Cause of Accidental Death

In 2014, poisonings surpassed car crashes as the leading cause of unintentional death among American adults, marking the first time since World War II that something other than vehicle collisions claimed the top spot. The increase in poisonings was driven by a sudden jump in prescription opioid overdoses, which rose to an all-time high in 2014, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. Fatal overdoses from opioids—drugs such as OxyContin, Percocet, and Vicodin—rose to 18,893 in 2014, up from an annual average of 16,453 between 2010 and 2013.

The World Health Organization estimates 69,000 people die from opioid overdose every year. Many of these deaths are due to respiratory failure as opioids affect the portion of the brain that regulates breathing.

It’s always tragic when people lose their lives through preventable events, but we must also remember that these events injure—sometimes grievously—as well as kill. Failing to consider injuries as well as deaths risks giving us a false impression of the overall safety of our roadways. The number of people who die each year in car crashes is dwarfed by the number of people who are injured in these collisions.

Regardless of the cause of the injury, at Walker Advertising we are always ready to defend the victims’ rights. People who have been injured should not have to muddle through the insurance claims, medical bills, and other expenses on their own. If you are an attorney who would like to join our attorney network and help defend the rights of people who have been injured through no fault of their own, please email moreinfo@walkeradvertising.com or call 1-800-4WALKER.