The report says more than half of accidental deaths were drug-related, a 22 percent increase from 2020. The most common drug found in toxicology tests was methamphetamine, going up 18 percent. Fentanyl-related deaths also rose. Of the people who lost their lives to drug overdose, nearly three quarters were male; 60 percent had a prior history of substance abuse or addiction; and only five percent of cases involved medication prescribed by the decedent’s physician.
The number of motor-vehicle-related pedestrian fatalities went up as well. Motorcycles were involved in a third of fatal crashes in the county, with sedans close behind in 31 percent of crashes.
The report also looked into deaths within the city’s homeless community. Overall, four-fifths of those who died were male, three-quarters were white and more than half died from drug intoxication. Sixty-two percent of deaths were deemed accidental. Seven people died of hypothermia in El Paso County last year.