TABLE 3-3 Overall Firearm-Related Deaths, 1999

Category

Firearm-Related

Total

% Firearm-Related

 

Number

Rate a

Number

Rate a

Percent

Suicide

16,599

6.09

29,199

10.71

56.85

Homicide

10,828

3.97

16,899

6.19

64.07

Accident

824

0.30

97,860

35.89

0.84

Legal intervention

299

0.11

398

0.15

75.13

Total

28,874

10.59

148,286

54.30

19.47

aRate per 100,000 population

SOURCE: National Vital Statistics System data compiled using Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS). National Center for Health Statistics (2002).

TABLE 3-4 Number and Rate (per 100,000) of Overall and Firearm-Related Nonfatal Injuries by Intent, 2000

 

Firearm-Related

Total

Number

Rate

Number

Rate

Assault

48,570

17.64

1,672,117

607.37

Legal intervention

862

0.31

63,304

22.99

Suicide attempt

3016

1.10

264,108

95.93

Accident

23,237

8.44

27,550,181

10,007.10

Total

75,685

27.49

29,549,710

10,733.39

 

SOURCE: NEISS data compiled using WISQARS (National Center for Health Statistics, 2002).

related deaths accounted for the majority of the total number of deaths in each category except accidents. In that case, firearm-related deaths accounted for a tiny fraction of all deaths by accidental means.

Table 3-4 shows overall and firearm-related nonfatal injuries by intent based on National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) data. In 2000, there were 75,685 nonfatal firearm-related injuries in the United States. Injuries from violent assault and accidents accounted for the majority of all firearm injuries—64 and 31 percent, respectively. In contrast to completed suicides, firearms account for a small proportion of self-inflicted nonfatal injuries.

How much violent crime involves the use of a firearm?7 This question can be answered with varying degrees of certainty, depending on the crime and the data source consulted. In general, data on homicide are the

7  

By definition, firearm involvement in violent crime includes not only the discharge of a firearm but also the presence of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime.



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