CHAPEL HILL, N.C., Jan. 5 (UPI) -- There are more than 18,000 fatal injuries in the home annually, and there were more than 12 million total injuries in 1998, North Carolina researchers report.
Falls, poisoning and burns were the leading causes of accidental death at home, the study found.
"Rates of fall deaths were highest for older adults, poisoning deaths were highest among middle-aged adults, while fire and burn death rates were highest among children and older adults," said Carol Runyan, director of the University of North Carolina Injury Prevention Research Center.
She said suffocation, inhalation and drowning deaths also are serious problems, especially for infants and toddlers. For non-fatal injuries, risks are greatest for the youngest and oldest.
"At a time when so much attention is focused on homeland security, it is ironic that we can experience this magnitude of trauma in the home every year and have it go virtually unnoticed," Runyan said.
Articles on the research appear in the January issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine