Guns surpass Auto Accidents as Number One Cause of Death in Children - Adamson Ahdoot LLP

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Guns surpass Auto Accidents as Number One Cause of Death in Children

May 2, 2022 Robert Jalon

In 2020, guns became the number one cause of death in children between the ages of 1 and 19, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A research letter published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) reveals prior to firearms, auto accidents were the leading cause of death in children and adolescents.

CDC data shows more than 45,200 tragic firearm-related deaths occurred in the U.S. in 2020. Of these deaths, more than 4,350 were children. Patrick M. Carter, M.D., a co-author of the NEJM letter, says children’s deaths stemming from firearms rose a staggering 30% from the previous year. Overall, guns were responsible for a 13% increase in deaths in 2020.

Source: New England Journal of Medicine

It appears an increase in gun violence during the COVID-19 pandemic is to blame for an increase in firearm-related deaths for both adults and children, but experts are unclear as to what attributed to the significant increase in children’s deaths associated with firearms. According to statistics provided by the CDC, 65% of firearm deaths in children are homicides and a staggering 35% are self-inflicted.

Some experts believe a focus on making cars safer, driver education, and children’s safety when riding in motor vehicles has helped decrease the occurrence of motor vehicle accidents and related deaths nationwide.

Now Carter says, like auto accidents, firearm education needs to be a priority.

“We can do the same thing with firearms. We just haven’t been able to do that in the same amount of years yet.”

– Patrick M. Carter, M.D.

Statewide in 2020, there were more than 3,440 gun-related deaths, reports the CDC. The CDC defines a gun-related injury or death as one inflicted by a shotgun, handgun, or rifle. Injuries or deaths inflicted by a pellet gun, BB gun, or gas or air-powered guns are not considered firearm injuries.

Injuries and deaths stemming from firearms are usually categorized as:

  • Unintentional – accidental wounds inflicted from a gun being cleaned or played with
  • Intentional – self-inflicted wounds
  • Legal – wounds inflicted by police or law enforcement agents acting in the line of duty
  • Violent – wounds inflicted intentionally (homicide or assault)
  • Undetermined – wounds inflicted without proper evidence to define what type of firearm injury it was

Expert Legal Advice

If you or a loved one suffered a severe gunshot injury you believe could have been prevented, get in touch with a Los Angeles personal injury attorney at Adamson Ahdoot LLP, today. Firearm injuries can be catastrophic and, in a second, forever change the lives of those injured.

Catastrophic injuries can cause not only severe physical pain and emotional distress, but can also result in overwhelming financial strain. Our knowledgeable legal team has handled many cases involving severe injuries and is prepared to build a strong case utilizing a team of financial and medical experts.

Together with our attorneys, these experts can explain how a reckless act has negatively affected your life and what you’ll need financially in the weeks, months, and years to ensure a proper recovery.

Call our firm now to get expert legal advice. A friendly member of our team is only a click away.

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