Deaths resulting from firearm- and motor-vehicle-related injuries--United States, 1968-1991

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 1994 Jan 28;43(3):37-42.


Injury is the leading cause of death for persons aged 1-44 years in the United States. More than half (55%) of all injury-related deaths are caused by motor vehicles and firearms. Although the number of deaths from motor-vehicle crashes has exceeded those from firearms, since 1968, differences in the number of deaths have declined: from 1968 through 1991, motor-vehicle-related deaths decreased by 21% (from 54,862 to 43,536) while firearm-related deaths increased by 60% (from 23,875 to 38,317). Based on these trends, by the year 2003, the number of firearm-related deaths will surpass the number of motor-vehicle crashes, and firearms will become the leading cause of injury-related death (Figure 1). This report compares trends and patterns of deaths resulting from firearm- and motor-vehicle-related injuries in the United States from 1968 through 1991.

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / mortality*
  • Female
  • Firearms / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mortality / trends
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Wounds, Gunshot / mortality*