"The grave yawns for the horseman." Equestrian deaths in South Australia 1973-1983

Med J Aust. 1984 Nov 10;141(10):632-5. doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.1984.tb113173.x.


The fatalities associated with the riding and handling of horses in South Australia over the 11-year period 1973-1983 are reviewed. There were 18 deaths, including two sudden natural deaths in the saddle and one drowning. The 15 cases of horse-related trauma represent a death rate of approximately one per million population per annum. Thirteen of the deaths were the result of a head injury after a fall. Nine persons were not wearing protective headgear. The two principal groups at risk were male professional riders with a mean age of 32 years and female amateurs with a mean age of 19 years.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Athletic Injuries* / mortality
  • Athletic Injuries* / prevention & control
  • Australia
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / etiology*
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / mortality
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / prevention & control
  • Female
  • Head Protective Devices
  • Horses*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk