Accidental deaths in 2015 the most in 36 years; over half from drug/alcohol abuse

(Riverton, Wyo.) - Fremont County Coroner Mark Stratmoen Thursday said the December 27, 2015, death of Magdelina A. Kuhn of Bonneville was due to her use of hydrocodone and alcohol. The death marked the sixth consecutive drug or alcohol toxicity death to close out 2015 and the 26th from an accidental drug or alcohol overdose of the year. "This is astonishingly high," Stratmoen said. "It's not good because each of these deaths could've been prevented." In a verdict and case docket, Kuhn's death was reported due to "Cardiac/Respiratory insufficiency and arrest due to acute hydrocodone toxicity." The autopsy toxicology report indicated the woman's blood alcohol level was 0.10 percent, with a count of 180 ng/mL of Hydrocodone and 52 ng/mL of Clonazepam. The combination killed her. "The 42 accidental deaths is the most we've had in the county since 1979," Stratmoen said. "Seventeen were directly related to drug or alcohol toxicity and 12 were related to motor vehicle crashes in which drugs or alcohol was a key factor." The second leading cause of accidental deaths during 2015 was from falls. One was a fall from a horse, two while rock climbing and four domestic instances." There were also four accidental asphyxia deaths during the last year, two involved people choking to death on food with two other non-related cases. In 2014 there were only 28 accidental deaths recorded. #county10 #news