According to the Economist, an interesting observation can arise from that fact that the auto industry has continuously evolved towards safer cars – gun deaths could overtake in 2015 the traffic accidents as the leading fatality cause for people aged 25 and below in America.
The forecast comes from a research report conducted by the Center for American Progress (CAP), described as a progressive public policy research and advocacy organization. On the other hand, the fact that the entire automotive industry has produced safer cars could actually lead to guns taking over among all age sections in the United States. That’s because increasingly tougher safety regulations, standards and stronger state laws on drunk driving, seatbelt use, licensing of young drivers have toned down the number of traffic fatalities – not at a record low. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), a total of 32,719 persons were killed in traffic accidents in 2013 (the latest data available) – marking a steep 24% fall from the same period of 2004. And the number should go even further down as newer cars replace aging vehicles and the industry sees the widespread use of high-tech accident warning and avoidance systems. All that should culminate with the age of autonomous, connected cars that can predict an accident before it can occur.
On the other hand, death by bullets – mainly suicides, accidents and domestic violence incidents – has seen the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report 32,351 firearm fatalities in the US for 2011 – once more, the latest data available. The CAP also notes that unlike the auto industry, the gun sector has been far less regulated in recent years, with efforts to restrict gun use to the owner (via fingerprint or a radio frequency encryption) see continued opposition from the National Rifle Association and Congress supporters.