A total of 7,820 injury deaths were registered in Australia 2002, 54% of which were males. The age-standardised rate was 56.5 injury deaths per 100,000 population for males and 23.3 per 100,000 for females. Rates of injury death were high for young adult males in the age range 20-39 years, who accounted for 26% of all injury deaths in 2002.
The most common cause of injury death was suicide, which accounted for 30% of all injury deaths registered in 2002. This was followed by transport-related injury which accounted for 24% of all injury deaths.
A slight downward trend in injury deaths, evident over the past few years, continued in 2002. This trend was slightly more marked for males.
The Northern Territory had a substantially higher rate of injury deaths than did the other States and Territories, rates for which did not differ greatly from one another.
Of all deaths registered in Australia in 2002, the most common underlying causes were diseases of the circulatory system (38%), neoplasms (29%), and diseases of the respiratory system (9%), followed by injury (6% of all deaths).
Injury and poisoning was the most common cause of death from early childhood through to middle age. In 2002, 50% of all deaths involving persons aged 1-44 years were due to injury or poisoning. (During the first year of life, congenital and perinatal conditions were the most common cause of death.)