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Firearm Injuries in Oklahoma

Link to Spanish version.

  • On average, at least one person dies every day from a firearm injury in Oklahoma.

  • Approximately 560 Oklahomans die each year from firearm-related injuries:

    • 380 suicides,
    • 150 homicides,
    • 10 deaths due to an unintentional injury from a firearm,
    • 20 deaths due to legal intervention or undetermined intent.
  • 61% of all suicides and homicides are committed using a firearm.

  • Firearm injuries are the third leading cause of injury death in Oklahoma behind motor vehicle crashes and unintentional poisoning.

  • Firearms account for 1 out of every 6 injury deaths among Oklahomans.

  • White people are about 2 times more likely to suicide using a firearm than black people, and 30% more likely to use a firearm to suicide than Native Americans.

    • Nearly 30% of suicide victims express their intent to commit suicide before they attempt it.
  • Black people die 5 times more often due to a firearm-related homicide than Native Americans and 8 times more often than white people.

  • Young males 5-24 years of age are at highest risk of dying due to an unintentional injury from a firearm.

  • Approximately 31% of Oklahomans own a firearm.1

    • Studies indicate that having a firearm in the home increases the risk for firearm-related suicide and homicide in the home.
  • Handguns are used in the majority of firearm deaths.


  • Firearms should be kept in a locked place and bullets locked up in a separate place from the firearms.

  • Use trigger locks, load indicators, and other safety devices.

  • All gun owners should take a firearm safety course.

  • Assure that children and unauthorized persons cannot gain access to guns.

  • If persons are depressed or have expressed their intent to commit suicide, remove firearms from the environment to restrict access to lethal means.

Internet Resources


1Kalesan B, Villareal MD, Keyes KM, and Galea, S. (2015). Gun ownership and social gun culture. Injury Prevention Online First, 29 June 2015. doi:10.1136/injuryprev-2015-041586


Injury Prevention Service
Oklahoma State Department of Health
1000 NE 10th Street
Oklahoma City, OK 73117

Revised June 23, 2016


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