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Columbia Personal Injury Attorney > Blog > Catastrophic Injury > What Are The Top Five Causes Of Accidental Death?

What Are The Top Five Causes Of Accidental Death?


The leading causes of accidental death in South Carolina, which are outlined below, usually are not “accidents.” Instead, negligence, or a lack of care, usually causes these incidents. People accidentally leave the lights on. They don’t accidentally speed excessively or drive drunk and cause fatal car wrecks. They also don’t accidentally fall off unsafe balconies or use medications that have dangerous side-effects.

If negligence causes wrongful death, a Columbia catastrophic injury attorney can force the responsible party to pay compensation in court. This compensation, while often substantial, doesn’t begin to make up for the loss the family suffered. However, quite frankly, this money helps survivors move on with their lives after a devastating wrongful death. At this point, that’s the best possible outcome. No one can reverse the series of events that lead to the wrongful death.

Car Wrecks

We hinted at the two most common causes of car crashes, aggressive driving and impaired driving, above. Most drivers have a duty of reasonable care. They must drive defensively and be at their best, mentally, physically, and otherwise, before they get behind the wheel. Speeding, drunk driving, and other such behaviors clearly violate this duty of care.

First party liability is only the beginning. Frequently, a third party, like an employer or alcohol provider, is financially responsible for damages. As mentioned, the damages in a wrongful death claim are often substantial. Vicarious liability gives these victims an additional source of recovery.


A fall from as little as four stories above ground is usually fatal. Slip-and-fall incidents could be fatal as well, especially if the victim has a pre-existing medical condition.

Generally, owners have a duty of care to ensure that their properties are reasonably safe. They must immediately address injury hazards. Posting a “warning” or other sign gives the owner additional time to address the hazard, but a sign is not a get-out-of-jail-free card.


The same duty of care applies in these situations. The responsibility to provide a safe environment includes a responsibility to provide adequate security. Lapses in security, like burned-out lights or broken cameras, create an environment that’s ripe for criminal activity. Therefore, owners are legally responsible for such activity.

This responsibility applies if the injury was foreseeable (possible). Evidence of foreseeability includes the area’s crime rate, prior similar incidents at that location, the type of business, and prior similar incidents in the neighborhood.

Unintentional Poisonings

The opioid epidemic caused unintentional poisoning deaths to go through the roof and rival car crashes, which have been the leading cause of injury-related death since the dawn of the automotive age.

Multiple parties could be legally responsible for drug overdose deaths. It’s wrong to assign 100 percent of the blame to drug addicts. Other possible responsible parties include a property owner who looked the other way while a house turned into a drug house, a drug shipping company that pumped opioid painkillers into a community, and a doctor who wrote prescriptions without asking too many questions.

Medical Negligence

A doctor’s duty of care doesn’t stop with asking questions. Doctors must thoroughly review patient medical history and the medical evidence in the case. Then, they must only do what’s in the best interests of the patient. They must set aside work-life-balance, making money, and all other priorities.

Misdiagnosis, surgical mistakes, and birth injuries are the most common kinds of medical malpractice. Because of the higher duty of care, almost all medical mistakes are negligence, which means a Columbia personal injury attorney can successfully bring a legal action against a doctor who’s responsible for a wrongful death.

Work With a Dedicated Richland County Lawyer

Injury victims are entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Columbia, contact the Marc Brown Law Firm. We routinely handle matters throughout the Palmetto State.


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