It may seem silly, but being a non-native English speaker (and writer), I find it difficult sometimes to choose appropriate words for my writing.

Can someone help me to find a COMMON word for all the "Artifical accidents", like Roadside accidents, building collapse, or fire, or someone who falls from the building?

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    In the UK, Road Traffic 'Accidents' are now called RTCs, Road Traffic Collisions, as it is no longer accepted that they are 'accidental'. There is always a reason for them. By the same token all other 'accidents', I suppose, are now termed 'occurrences' or some such. Apart from lightning strikes, almost everything else is human error. – Nigel J Dec 6 '17 at 20:43
  • BTW, building collapse, fire, someone falling from a building can all be accidental. – Kris Jan 9 '18 at 11:59
  • If the context provides the rest of the meaning, incident should work. – Kris Jan 9 '18 at 12:01
  • In what sense are you using 'artificial'? The word, as in this definition conveys the meaning of deliberate intent to simulate a natural occurrence, condition, substance or object. Although road accidents, building collapses and so on involve man-made objects and structures a genuine accident has no deliberate intention behind it. An 'artificial accident' would, to me, be one involving crime of some sort (usually fraud, murder or arson) set up to look like an accident. – BoldBen Jan 9 '18 at 12:32

This site provides a discussion of the use of the word accident in connection with safety, which I found quite interesting, but it does not provide an all-purpose alternative to using the term. Rather, it advocates its use. Is the term "accident" still acceptable?

There is a move away from calling vehicle collisions accidents, as although they may happen by accident – that is, not (usually) on purpose –accident does not really describe what has occurred. For vehicles – Collisions, car wrecks, prangs?

Maybe consider "Artificial accidents" to be:

Unforeseen events? Preventable events? Unintentional occurrences?

As per Merriam-Webster an accident is:

a: an unforeseen and unplanned event or circumstance Their meeting was an accident.

b: lack of intention or necessity: chance They met by accident rather than by design.

2 a: an unfortunate event resulting, especially from carelessness or ignorance He was involved in a traffic accident.

This response is not intended to be definitive, as I don't think there is a term that applies which really covers what is being sought. However, I found the question interesting in that the word the commonly used for a traffic mishap (aka accident) is undergoing a change in some jurisdictions/areas.

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    It turns out that the term for automobile accidents is a regional thing. So it's not possible to come up with a single answer here. – tchrist Dec 9 '17 at 13:37
  • @tchrist True enough. For that reason, I didn't try to supply a definitive answer. Perhaps I should make that clear. – Livrecache Dec 10 '17 at 4:37
  • So, that doesn't answer the Q at hand. – Kris Jan 9 '18 at 11:59
  • @Kris Perhaps not. I had done my best. I had hoped to focus the discussion somewhat by articulating some possible answers. Fail! – Livrecache Jan 9 '18 at 14:56


n. An accident, especially one involving serious injury or loss of life.

The word is often used in the context of death but is also acceptable in the context of severe injury due to accident

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