House Of Pain: A Look At Household Appliance Injuries

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Your household appliances are trying to kill you.

Sound like a bad horror movie?  Well, that’s actually the conclusion one might draw based on data collected by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Their National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) compiled data from emergency-room visits for injuries caused by common household gadgets from 1979 on (data presented in a graph below is for year 2007).

As you can see from the chart, lawnmowers topped the chart as the Charles Manson of tools with nearly 80,000 injuries, with TV sets and miscellaneous electrocutions rounding out the top three.

The stats are also broken down by male vs. female injuries.  So it’s not surprising that, to return to the lawnmower category, John Deere attacks were four times more prevalent for men than women — or that females lead in getting hurt by cooking ranges, kitchen appliances, and grooming aids.  Chainsaws, air conditioners, and power tools, not surprisingly, maimed more guys by a wide margin.  What IS surprising is that washers and dryers took out nearly the same number of each gender.

(Keep in mind that it’s not always the appliance’s fault; a good chunk of these injury stats could very well have been caused by improper use of said appliances.  REMEMBER: vending machines don’t crush people — people rocking said vending machines back and forth to free that stuck bag of Doritos crush themselves.)


Data is from year 2007
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What’s NOT on the list?  Cell phones.  The old “holding a microwave transmitter that close to your ear causes brain cancer” scare was pretty much discredited years ago.  Mind you, the stats also don’t list auto accidents caused by calling/texting while driving — so Bluetooth headsets and Google Voice all around, guys.

And keep your eye on that food processor: I think it’s eyeing you with bad intent…

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