Year: 1986 Source: South African Medical Journal, v.69, (26 April 1986), p.559-562 SIEC No: 20030041

Cause- & age-specific mortality rates (MRs) were calculated for 1980 for all four population groups in the RSA for certain accidents, poisonings, & violence as they are grouped in the WHO International Classification of Diseases. Cause-specific MRs of coloreds, Asians & blacks were age-adjusted to the age-distribution of whites in 1980 in order to judge the relative importance of the various causes of death. This showed that in whites & Asians motor vehicle accidents (MVAs) head the rank order of MRs; furthermore the first three MRs in the rank order, namely for MVAs, suicide & violence, are common in these two populations. The authors suggest that the fact that deaths from MVAs & violence rank so high in the MRs for all four population groups lends support to the contention that the RSA is a ‘violent society’. (2 refs)