Falls are one of life’s great overlooked perils. We fear terror attacks, shark bites, and other minutely remote dangers, yet more than 420,000 people die worldwide each year after falling. Falls are the second-leading cause of death by injury after car accidents. In the United States, falls cause 32,000 fatalities a year (more than four times the number caused by drowning and fires combined). Nearly three times as many people die in the U.S. after falling as are murdered by firearms.
Falls are even more significant as a cause of injury. More patients go to emergency rooms in the U.S. after falling than from any other form of mishap, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly triple the number injured by car accidents. The cost is enormous. As well as taking up more than a third of ER budgets, fall-related injuries often lead to expensive personal injury claims.
It makes sense that falls dwarf most other hazards. Falls can happen anywhere at any time to anyone. “It’s not the fall that gets you, the skydiving joke goes. “It’s the sudden stop at the bottom”.
I’ve come across an informative PDF guide that highlights the human factor in slips, trips and falls.
Be Safe in the Region of Risk
Decoding Human Factors, LLC