Avoidable death: tobacco,alcohol and road accidents in France

Population and Societies

393, September 2003

Avoidable death: tobacco, alcohol, and road accidents in France

  • Tobacco consumption and cases of lung cancer on the increase
  • Decreasing alcohol consumption and cases of alcoholic cirrhosis
  • Mortality due to road accidents: an arrested increase
  • From identifying causes to sharing responsibility

While deaths caused by bovine spongiform encephalopathy can be counted on one hand in France, about a hundred thousand deaths are caused each year by tobacco (around 60,000 deaths in 1995), alcohol (45,000) and road accidents (8,000). A look at the most frequent causes of avoidable death in France shows that the consumption of alcohol is on the decline as are diseases related to alcohol, and that deaths due to road accidents are also decreasing, despite a regular increase in the kilometres travelled. The evolution in the damage caused by tobacco is more complex due to the delay between the consumption and the evolution of the pathologies: it is increasing significantly for women, while it seems to be stabilizing for men.

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