Accidents


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Accidents

 

(also external injuries; in Russian, travmatizm), the totality of external injuries, or traumas, in a given population over a given time. The rate of such injuries is an important indicator of the effect of social conditions on public health.

Changing conditions are reflected in the new categories of accidents recorded. In the 20th century, accidents have taken third place, after cancer and cardiovascular diseases, as a cause of death in the economically developed countries. The principal victims of accidents are children, adolescents, and young adults. Among 15- to 30-year-old males, accidents are the principal cause of illness, disability, and death. In the classification of injuries by type of accident, industrial (including agricultural) accidents are distinguished from nonindustrial ones (including motor vehicle, home, and sports accidents).

The growing rate of industrial accidents in most countries is related to the growth of heavy industry. The adoption of preventive measures in this area depends on various social and technological factors. In the USSR and the other socialist countries, plans and legislative measures for the prevention of industrial accidents are jointly implemented by the administrative bodies of enterprises, labor unions, and medical establishments.

The increase in nonindustrial accidents in the second half of the 20th century is due primarily to the rapidly growing rate of motor vehicle accidents, with their high incidence of crippling and fatal injuries. The growing rate of home accidents, particularly among children, is a consequence of urbanization and the common use of mechanical and electrical home appliances. Improved safety engineering and public health education can prevent such nonoccupational accidents. The prevention of accidents among children and adolescents is more difficult because of the level of physical activity and states of mind that are characteristic of these age groups. Preventive measures for this population are based on regular organized leisure-time activities; instruction in traffic safety rules must be included. Injuries resulting from athletic accidents have become more numerous with increased participation in sports and more intensive training; such accidents may be prevented by using scientific findings and by providing for medical inspection in the arrangement of training and competitive events.

In a significant number of cases, accidents are caused by impaired motor coordination and delayed reaction to external stimuli due to fatigue, illness, or drunkenness.

REFERENCES

Loginova, E. A. Ocherki po istorii bor’by s travmatizmom v SSSR. Moscow, 1958.
Nazarenko, I. T. Proizvodstvennyi travmatizm i zhiznennyi uroven trudiashchikhsia SShA. Moscow, 1961.
Freidlin, S. Ia. Profilaktika travmatizma i organizatsiia travmatologicheskoipomoshchi, 2nd ed. Leningrad, 1963.
Dubrov, la. G. Posobiepo travmalologii. Moscow, 1973.

V. IU. GOLIAKHOVSKII

References in classic literature ?
Nevertheless, like the greater part of our misfortunes, even so serious a contingency brings its remedy and consolation with it, if the sufferer will but make the best rather than the worst, of the accident which has befallen him.
I consider," said Sir Oliver, "that blinkers are dangerous things in the night; we horses can see much better in the dark than men can, and many an accident would never have happened if horses might have had the full use of their eyes.
It was my good fortune, that no ill accident happened in these entertainments; only once a fiery horse, that belonged to one of the captains, pawing with his hoof, struck a hole in my handkerchief, and his foot slipping, he overthrew his rider and himself; but I immediately relieved them both, and covering the hole with one hand, I set down the troop with the other, in the same manner as I took them up.
Nevertheless we got over without accident, and soon found ourselves at the stationhouse.
I cannot pretend to recount all that he told me, but I gleaned from what he said that he was the genius who presided over the contretemps of mankind, and whose business it was to bring about the odd accidents which are continually astonishing the skeptic.
He who proposes to make that inquiry which is necessary concerning what government is best, ought first to determine what manner of living is most eligible; for while this remains uncertain it will also be equally uncertain what government is best: for, provided no unexpected accidents interfere, it is highly probable, that those who enjoy the best government will live the most happily according to their circumstances; he ought, therefore, first to know what manner of life is most desirable for all; and afterwards whether this life is the same to the man and the citizen, or different.
Nor can I either, my dear Dick; accidents are generally caused by the imprudence of the aeronauts, or the defective construction of their apparatus.
This meant longer hours of travel, and Daylight, for good measure and for a margin against accidents, hit the trail for twelve hours a day.
I worked seventeen years in them mills, an' I've took notice that most of the accidents happens just before whistle-blow.
So, thanks to his care, his intelligence, his useful intervention in all difficulties, his prodigious and humane sagacity, the average of accidents did not exceed that of transatlantic countries, noted for their excessive precautions-- France, for instance, among others, where they reckon about one accident for every two hundred thousand francs of work.
She now began to bewail herself in very bitter terms, and floods of tears accompanied her lamentations; which the lady, her companion, declared she could not blame, but at the same time dissuaded her from indulging; attempting to moderate the grief of her friend by philosophical observations on the many disappointments to which human life is daily subject, which, she said, was a sufficient consideration to fortify our minds against any accidents, how sudden or terrible soever.
The time is now past when accidents could befall me; and what COULD now fall to my lot which would not already be mine own!