Drowning Statistics: Men Three Times More Likely To Drown Than Women

Elaine Radford - Author
By

Sep. 1 2013, Updated 10:00 a.m. ET

New drowning statistics reveal that men drown at roughly three times the rate of women. The new study was released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

You can see the CDC’s rather stunning graphic by scrolling down. The study covered the 12 years running from 1999-2010 for a total of 49,762 drowning deaths in the United States over that period.

In other words, there were over 4,000 drowning deaths each year in this country.

And the differences in the drowning statistics between men and women were astonishing. About 2.2 men per 100,000 die every year from drowning, while only 0.7 women per 100,000 die every year from that cause.

You can do the math yourself. Men are dying by drowning at three times the rate of women.

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Females over the age of four had low death rates. For girls, the highest drowning risk came between the ages of one to four years old. Babies under age one had the second highest risk.

The highest risk years for males were also age one to four, with a drowning rate of 3.9 per 100,000. The drowning rate dropped somewhat after that but eventually soared back up to 3.9 per 100,000 for men 85 years old or older.

The CDC report didn’t comment on the huge disparity in the death risk from drowning between males and females.

However, the new drowning statistics seemed to reflect a trend that started much earlier than 1999.

A National Institutes of Health paper published in the mid 1990s said that men drowned more frequently than women because they were more likely to take risks and were more likely to be drunk while swimming.

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