Injury kills more young people than all other causes combined, accounting for over 70% of all youth deaths. The following information provides an overview of risk factors associated with youth. Please refer to each mechanism of injury for specific prevention information.


  • Injury is the leading cause of child and youth deaths.
  • For youth 15-19 years of age, 76% of the deaths were due to injuries.
  • More than half (62%) of the death of youth 10 to 14 years of age were due to injuries.
  • Motor vehicle collisions were the leading cause of child and youth (1 and 19 years of age) injury deaths.
  • Motor vehicle-related admissions were the leading cause of injury admissions for youth 10 to 19 years of age.
  • Sports-related injuries were the leading cause of injury emergency department visits for youth 10 to 19 years of age.
  • In Alberta, in 2010 there were 135 deaths, 6,201 hospital admissions and 139,250 emergency department visits of child and youth due to injury.

Prevention Messages

Older children are not a substitute for parental supervision

  • Mothers expect siblings to have similar supervision strategies as themselves, however this is not the case. In a recent study, just over 50% of older siblings responded in the manner their parents expected them to (Morrongiello et al., 2010).

Message Delivery

  • Use of graphic images is effective because emotional impact was needed to convince parents of the potential severity of injury.
  • Use statistics and facts to add credibility to the information presented.
  • Highlighting unexpected injury cases made them realize that they still had more to learn about risk factors.
  • Health and social care providers should provide home visiting programs to families ‘at risk’ as part of injury prevention and overall maternal-child wellness strategies.

Resources & Toolkits

Supportive Programs