Gun deaths exceed motor vehicle deaths in Vermont, 34 states and DC


That year, firearm deaths (including firearm suicides, homicides, and unintentional shooting deaths) exceeded motor vehicle deaths (occupants and pedestrians) in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado , Delaware, District of Columbia, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Carolina South, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

The analysis calls the numbers “shocking”, acknowledging the average American’s exposure to motor vehicles as opposed to firearms. Nine out of 10 American households have access to a motor vehicle while about four out of 10 American households own a firearm.

In just over a decade, the number of states plus the District of Columbia where firearm deaths exceed motor vehicle deaths has risen from just 13 in 2010 to 35 in 2020, a jump of 169 %. Comprehensive state-by-state tables showing firearm deaths and death rates and motor vehicle deaths and rates for 2010 and 2020 are contained in the analysis. The data used for the analysis comes from the WISQARS database of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

VPC Director of Government Affairs Kristen Rand says, “Firearms are the only consumer product that the federal government does not regulate for health and safety. This lack of regulation allows the firearms industry to innovate to improve lethality, continually increasing firepower in the hands of civilians. Due to federal regulations, motor vehicle manufacturers must strive to make their products safer. In contrast, due to their lack of regulation, gun manufacturers are scrambling to find ways to make their products more lethal.

In its conclusion, the analysis states that “firearm deaths and injuries are an accelerating public health crisis, fueled by an unregulated industry that strives to develop firearms and ammunition of more and more deadly. It then touts this firepower in its marketing efforts. As with motor vehicles, until the firearms industry is held liable for damage caused by its products only limited progress can be done to reduce the number of firearm deaths and injuries.These measures would include comprehensive health and safety regulation of the firearms industry and the repeal of the Trade Protection Act lawful weapons (PLCAA).”

To see the full analysis, visit

The Violence Policy Center is a national educational organization that fights firearm death and injury. Follow the VPC on Twitter and Facebook.

Contact: Sally Martinelli, 202-822-8200 ext. 104, [email protected]

SOURCE WASHINGTON, April 28, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Violence Policy Center


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