A study of post-mortem reports of people who died after sustaining trauma injuries in Otago and Southland has found that just under half may have survived with swift medical treatment.
The study looked at 191 deaths which occurred between 2000 and 2004, including people injured in motor vehicle or plane crashes, climbing accidents, and assaults.
Researcher and Canberra Hospital emergency registrar, Dr James Falconer, says 10% had survivable injuries and 35% had potentially survivable injuries.
Some of those people would never have been saved, however, because they were not located for several days.
Dr Falconer says the Otago and Southland statistics are similar to those in Australia and Sweden.