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Guns Up - Deaths Down - Sarah Silent

by NSSF

NEWTOWN, Conn.—A new report from the National Safety Council shows that accidental firearm-related fatalities remain at record lows, and accidents involving youths continue to decline significantly.

The downward trends are occurring even as firearm ownership rises in the U.S.

THE CDC REPORTS . . .

The declining trends reported by the National Safety Council are also supported by research available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the CDC, in the past decade, all four regions of the U.S. have witnessed dramatic declines in the number of accidental firearm-related fatalities. 
 
Statistics in the council's 2007 "Injury Facts" report show a 40 percent decrease in accidental firearm-related fatalities over a 10-year period ending in 2005. The report also shows firearm-related accidents involving children ages 14 and under declined 69 percent between 1995 and 2003. 

The council's most recent statistics show 109,277 U.S. residents died in accidents of all types in 2005. Less than 1 percent involved firearms. The most common deadly accidents involved motor vehicles, poisonings and falls, claiming 75 percent of all accidental deaths.

"By continuing to heighten awareness of gun safety and responsible firearms storage, these record low numbers can be driven even lower," said Doug Painter, president of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), the trade association for the firearms industry.

NSSF directs and funds a number of initiatives focused on firearms safety, including Project ChildSafe®, which, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice, has distributed more than 35 million free gun safety information kits, including gun locks, nationwide. NSSF also distributes safety literature and videos that emphasize outreach to schools. Additional support is provided for hunter safety programs.

"Programs and efforts that communicate the importance of firearms safety have undeniably played a part in bringing these numbers to record lows, and continuing that awareness will only help ensure they continue downward," Painter added.

The declining trends reported by the National Safety Council are also supported by research available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). According to the CDC, in the past decade, all four regions of the U.S. have witnessed dramatic declines in the number of accidental firearm-related fatalities.

Other new findings from the National Safety Council include:

● There were 730 accidental firearm-related fatalities in 2005, down from 750 reported in 2004. Firearm-related fatalities are down 40 percent from the 1,225 accidents reported in 1995.


● Accidental firearm-related fatalities among children ages 14 and under declined 7 percent in 2005 when compared to the previous year and were down 69 percent between 1995 and 2003.


● Accidental firearm-related injuries were down 11 percent among teenagers (ages 15-19) when compared to the previous year.


● Accidental firearm-related fatalities continue to have the largest percentage decrease of all measured types of accidental fatalities.

The estimated number of citizen-owned firearms in the U.S. has risen to more than 290 million, while the number of American households with at least one firearm is now about 47.8 million.

NSSF, formed in 1961, is the trade association for the firearm industry. It directs a variety of outreach programs to promote greater participation and better understanding of shooting sports, emphasizing safe and responsible ownership of firearms. For further information, visit www.nssf.org.



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