Accidents and violence: a portrait of the occurrences in emergency care services

This study aimed to characterize the care provided in a hospital emergency service in Maceió city, Alagoas, Brazil, and identify the characteristics of accident victims attended at this service in 2009. Exploratory, descriptive study, with a quantitative approach. Data were collected from secondary sources. Based on the total number of accidents in 2009, which summed 143,262, a random sample of 399 occurrences was selected, calculated with a sampling error of 5% and confidence interval of 95%. For data collection, it was used a form drawn up based on the record of Accidents and Violence Secretariat of Health Surveillance, Ministry of Health. The variables studied were age and sex of the victim, type and time of the occurrence. The majority (76.19%) of victims were men, aged between 15 and 49 years (66.96%), predominantly between 20 and 29 years (26.50%); 11.55% were drivers of vehicles, and 8.02% were pedestrians. The highest incidence of accidents occurred during the afternoon and evening, with 31.33% and 32.83% of cases, respectively. The results highlight the risk that drivers face in land transport traffic in the city of Maceió, and such occurrences need interventions and other research to assess risk situations.