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An accident or a mishap is an unforeseen and unplanned event or circumstance, often with lack of intention or necessity. It usually implies a generally negative outcome which might have been avoided or prevented had circumstances leading up to the accident been recognized, and acted upon, prior to its occurrence. Injury prevention refers to activities designed to foresee and avoid accidents.
Accidents of particularly common types (crashing of automobiles, events causing fire, etc.) are investigated to identify how to avoid them in the future. This is sometimes called root cause analysis, but does not generally apply to accidents that cannot be deterministically predicted. A root cause of an uncommon and purely random accident may never be identified, and thus future similar accidents remain "accidental."
Physical and non-physical
Physical examples of accidents include unintended collisions or falls, being injured by touching something sharp, hot, or electrical, or ingesting poison. Non-physical examples are unintentionally revealing a secret or otherwise saying something incorrectly, forgetting an appointment, etc.
- Accidents during the execution of work or arising out of it are called work accidents. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), more than 337 million accidents happen on the job each year, resulting, together with occupational diseases, in more than 2.3 million deaths annually.
- In contrast, leisure-related accidents are mainly sports injuries.
Most common causes
Incidence of accidents (of a severity of resulting in seeking medical care), sorted by activity (in Denmark in 2002).
Traffic accidents and falls are the most common causes of physical traumas or injuries leading to hospital care. According to a 2005 survey of injuries sustained at home, which used data from the National Vital Statistics System of the United States National Center for Health Statistics, falls, poisoning, and fire/burn injuries are the most common causes of death. The United States also collects statistically valid injury data (sampled from 100 hospitals) through the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System administered by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. This program was revised in 2000 to include all injuries rather than just injuries involving products. Data on emergency room visits is also collected through the National Health Interview Survey. In The U.S. the Bureau of Labor Statistics has available on their website extensive statistics on workplace accidents.
Other specific topics
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SUFFIELD - A young boy was killed Thursday afternoon in a traffic accident after he was hit by a truck on Mountain Road as he road his bicycle with some friends, according to the Suffield school superintendent. Police were releasing limited information ...
Wed, 23 Jul 2014 19:38:24 -0700
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McPHERSON, Kansas – The Kansas Highway Patrol is investigating a fatal crash that happened on I-135 two miles north of McPherson Thursday afternoon. Troopers say the first vehicle was moving to the inside lane, when a car behind it struck the car and ...
Thu, 24 Jul 2014 04:55:29 -0700
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -On Oct. 19, 1997, Landon Whitley was in the backseat of his parent's Pontiac Sunfire, riding home from church with mom and dad. Crossing a Mint-Hill intersection, the family was T-boned by an ambulance (not in emergency-mode).
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