For more than four decades now sharks have been viewed as one of the most deadly animals in the world, mainly due to several publicized attacks surfers have suffered throughout the last decade in particular and even more so thanks to Spielberg’s blockbuster, Jaws. Yet, by taking a close look at the official statistics one will realize that sharks are nowhere near as deadly as we might think. According to the official U.S. Life Expectancy Facts the average American citizen has a one in sixty-three chance of dying from the flu and only a 1 in 3.7 million chance of being killed by a shark during his or her lifetime.
And the flu is just one example; check out these 25 things that you might not consider to be deadly but are in fact deadlier than sharks.
According to the American toy-related deaths and injuries calendar for 2013–2014 six children between the ages of 5 and 12 died from latex balloons. They don’t specify how the deaths occurred but we think choking is the most likely reason.
When most people use vending machines they don’t usually think of them as deadly, but these beasts actually kill more people per year than sharks and snakes combined. How? According to the available police reports what usually happens is that when the machine steals somebody’s snack, drink, or money, they decide to hit it a bit too hard and as a result it falls on them and, well, you can guess the outcome.
While parents around the world always stress safety on the trampoline, these joyful inventions still contribute to at least two deaths and numerous serious injuries each year.
Ties are known for being the most necessary accessories for men who spend hundreds of dollars buying classy suits and elegant shirts but unfortunately they can be deadly too. Ties are responsible for the deaths of almost ten men every year in the U.S., either by using them to commit suicide or accidentally.
In 2011 alone, 29 people were killed by falling TV sets, while there was only one recorded case of a fatal shark attack.
Despite being the favorite playground equipment of most kids around the world swing sets are responsible for killing more than 20 people (mostly kids) annually in the United States.
Staircases and steps don’t just kill more people than sharks do every year, they are also considered one of the deadliest things on the planet with more than 1,600 deaths in the U.S. alone. If you add in the numbers from all over the world the total rises dramatically.
These small heaters might not look threatening at all but they are one of the top causes of accidental fires and fire-related deaths in the U.S., with more than 40 people dying each year from fires caused by them.
Pencils have been proven to be one of the deadliest objects since more than 100 people die from them every year. The most frequent reason is choking on the plastic top on the eraser.
Despite this type of death being considered so rare to the point it has become a metaphor for extremely bad luck, lightning is responsible for numerous deaths every year. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), around 40-60 people lose their lives in the U.S. every year with the majority of them struck on beaches.
With more than 75 citizens losing their lives to these vehicles annually, the United States is currently leading the world in lawn mower fatalities. The worst part about this, however, is that the death that usually occurs is extremely bloody and painful.
More than 113 ladder-related fatalities were recorded in the U.S. during 2014, which should remind us that climbing up and down a ladder isn’t as innocent and harmless as some might think.
Despite the fact that there are numerous other animals who kill way more humans than jellyfish, we picked this strange sea creature to point out how sharks are not even the deadliest animals in the oceans. Some 20-40 people die from being stung by box jellyfish every year in the Philippines alone, according to the U.S. National Science Foundation, while the global estimates are somewhere between 200–220.
More than 100 people lose their lives in Russia from these sneaky cold weapons. How? The report doesn’t get specific but we guess that when they drop from a high place they act like sharp knives.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, about 13 children each year choke to death in a vain, futile effort to consume hot dogs. What’s even sadder is that a similar Chinese-based survey showed that hot dogs kill a substantially greater number of children in China than in the U.S.
Helping friends or family move their furniture to a new place can be really, really dangerous, but most people don’t think it is as deadly as it really is. For the record, 26 people are crushed annually by furniture, which is about 25 more than the number of people who die from shark attacks.
Professional fireworks are extremely common and safe in most cases for celebrating holidays, but it’s usually the smaller, personal fireworks that cause the biggest tragedies. While it might seem a bit obvious to be careful around something that sparks fire out of your hand, these colorful beauties “murder” about seven people annually, while they seriously injure even more.
Dogs might have the reputation of being man’s best friend but according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at least 4.5–4.7 million Americans are bitten by dogs every year and about thirty of these bites result in death.
This awesome tropical fruit known for producing one of the most delicious juices can also turn into a deadly weapon when it falls from a tree onto the heads of the unlucky who are sitting or walking beneath. According to various estimates this fuzzy, round projectile kills about 150 people each year worldwide.
This might sound unbelievable or even like a joke but believe it or not champagne corks are responsible for 24 deaths a year globally. Apparently some people party too hard to the point where they fall victim to The Bubbly.
Well, cell phones can’t directly kill someone of course, but texting while driving is legally to blame for more than 6,000 deaths in the U.S., which is about 25% of all auto collisions in the country.
Candles are usually seen as necessary, relaxing accessories of romantic dinners and baths but in reality they cause over 10,000 fires annually in North America, and are responsible for killing about 120 people in those fires.
Shopping on Black Friday can be a very dangerous activity. As a matter of fact, it can be deadly, since in the past six years seven people lost their lives and about 100 were injured (some seriously) in the United States. In other words, more people have died in the U.S. in the past six years shopping on Black Friday than from shark attacks.
Most of us might see our beds as the ultimate shelter. A place where we can rest and sleep after a long, tiring day at work or school but how many of you knew that falling out of bed is responsible for killing 450 people annually? And the scariest part, is that this number accounts for U.S. victims only.
It’s estimated that more than three hundred people drown in household tubs every year, with most of them either falling asleep or being under the influence of drugs or sleeping pills.