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Unintentional Injuries: The Economic Effect Is Felt By More Than Just The Person Injured

According to estimates made by the National Safety Council (NSC), fatal and non-fatal unintended injuries have a surprisingly large economic impact on a national scale, an impact that the NSC says underscores the importance prevention work.

The most recent estimate, based on data from 2008, sets forth the approximated cost incurred by society for these deaths and injuries in the categories of: motor vehicle accidents, home and work accidents, and public accidents. A comprehensive breakdown of the NSC estimates can be found here, but the highlights of the study are listed below:

Note: The calculable costs of these injuries and deaths include wage and productivity losses, medical expenses, administrative expenses, motor vehicle damage, and employers’ uninsured costs.

Motor Vehicles: Average Economic Cost per Death, Injury, or Crash in 2008:

  • Death: $1,300,000
  • Nonfatal Disabling Injury: $63,500
  • Property Damage Crash (including non-disabling injuries): $8,300

Home, Work or Public: Average Economic Cost of Fatal and Nonfatal Injuries by Class of Injury, 2008:

  • Home injuries (fatal and nonfatal) per death: $3,300,000
  • Public non-motor vehicle injuries (fatal and nonfatal) per death: $4,600,000
  • Work injuries (fatal and nonfatal) per death:

                            –without employers’ uninsured costs: $39,600,000

                            –with employers’ uninsured costs: $42,500,000

With the current state of this country’s economy, the staggering figures listed above should not go unnoticed. Along with the societal benefits that promoting a safer work, home and driving culture would provide, it is evident that such efforts would also have a great impact on the nation’s economy.

For a more in-depth, explanatory look at the costs that these preventable injuries incur, please visit the National Safety Council’s Resources Database.

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