Latvian males lead Europe in deaths by accident, drowning and assault

New data published by Eurostat suggests that men in the Baltic states, including Latvia, are among the most likely to die as a result of accidents, including drownings and assaults, whereas the risk for women is considerably smaller.

In 2017, a higher share of deaths among men (than among women) in the EU were from accidents (3.8 % compared with 2.7 %). This pattern was repeated in 2019 across all of the EU Member States except for Luxembourg and the Netherlands, where the share among women was higher than that among men. The most pronounced gender differences were in the Baltic Member States where the difference between the sexes – with higher shares among men – was at least 3.0 percentage points.

Deaths from accidents data, 2019

In all EU Member States the standardised death rate for men in 2019 was higher than that for women, most notably in the Baltic Member States and Romania where the difference was more than 40 deaths per 100 000 inhabitants.

When the precise type of accident is taken into account, Latvia's well-established problem with drownings really comes to the fore, accounting for an astonishing 9.4 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants among men but just 1.6 deaths among women.

For accidental drowning and submersion, standardised death rates for men and for women in Latvia and Lithuania were at least 3.5 times as high as the EU average.

For accidental poisoning and exposure to noxious substances, the rates for men were 4.5 times as high as the EU average in Lithuania and 5.6 times as high in Estonia; among women, rates were 4.3 times as high as the EU average in Estonia.

Among males, the highest standardised death rates for assaults in the EU Member States were recorded for the Baltic Member States, each recording rates that were at least 3.5 times as high as the EU average (for 2017). Among females, rates that were at least twice as high as the EU average (for 2017) were observed in Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania and Romania.

Latvian men record the highest death rates in the EU in the "other accidents" category (29.7 per 100,000) and in deaths from assault (6.0). Latvian women have the second-highest rate of death from assault on 1.1 per 100,000, behind Cyprus' figure of 1.7.

Causes of deaths from accidents and assaults

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