Accidents in Harris County

According to figures released by the Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS), accidents accounted for 1,185 deaths in Harris County in 2002. While the statistics are approximately five years old at this point (it isn’t often that you find the most up-to-date stats from government entities) it is still important to note just how many people are injured in Houston each and every year.

What is worse is that so many of these accidents could have been avoided if an individual or party involved had behaved in a responsible manner, but so many of them are ultimately found to be caused by reckless or negligent actions of one or more parties. When you dig into the details of these accidents, you discover that a large number (nearly half) of these fatal accidents are vehicle collisions.

This, unfortunately, is unsurprising, given how many cars are on the road in Houston each and every day. The city has experienced explosive growth over the past decade (or more) and drivers in Houston find themselves in gridlocked traffic from Katy to Downtown, or from Downtown to the Woodlands, and every suburb and neighborhood in this city.

The 577 total deaths in “transport accidents” only tells part of the story. A full 520 of those fatalities occurred in car, truck, or motorcycle accidents, while 20 could be attributed to other land transport accidents (ATVs, bicycles, etc.), and the final 17 could be attributed to water, air, space, and unspecified accidents.

The majority (by a rather slim margin, comparatively) are non-transport accidents, which totaled 608 fatalities in 2002. Of those, 110 individuals died in a slip-and-fall accident, 40 from accidental drowning, 26 from exposure to fire, flames, or smoke, 254 to accidental poisoning, 4 to accidental discharge of firearms, and 174 to non-reported accidents that were not transport related.

Overall, these numbers tell a strong tale of how individuals in Houston are exposed to daily dangers that can potentially lead to fatal accidents. While some accidents are unavoidable, a large majority of them could be prevented if people had taken the proper safety precautions or had behaved in a responsible manner. When it comes to vehicle accidents, people have a responsibility to obey speed limits, drive while sober, and drive without distractions behind the wheel to help prevent unnecessary accidents. Property owners have a responsibility to maintain their homes or businesses in a manner that prevents unnecessary falls or slips, and if an area presents a danger to others, they must put up proper signage to warn people of the potential dangers.

Dangerous industries such as factories, refineries, and oil rigs should have proper training and safety procedures in place to prevent workplace accidents such as explosions and fires, which are often very deadly for workers who happen to be present.

All of these precautions can help people stay safe while working, traveling, and going about their daily lives in Houston. While Harris County is a busy area and is constantly growing, it’s citizens must remember to protect each other while living and working in this area.