Is behavior influenced by what we see in movies and TV? Well, your typical Three Stooges movie features the trio involved in painful accidents, often while engaged in home repairs. And on the April 16th episode of 60 Second Science, we reported on the huge increase in nail gun accidents, related to the boom in home handymanning. Now there’s research showing that more of us are falling off ladders.
According to a study in the May issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, more than 2.1 million people were treated in US emergency rooms for ladder accidents from 1990 to 2005. And during the study period, the number of incidents continued to rise, going up about 50 percent in 2005 compared with 1990. It’s the first study to use national data to analyze ladder related injuries. The data were collected by the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, run by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission. Surveillance is a useful way to discover accident trends that might fly below radar. And the researchers urge better education to help prevent at least some injuries.