ACC releases list of most unusual injuries

(iStock)
(iStock)

In the last financial year, $2.8 billion was paid out by ACC to injured New Zealanders, to treat a total of nearly four million claims.

Some are predictable but others are not, and the most unusual injury claims from 2015 have been revealed to Newshub by ACC.

Among the more bizarre and bruising are injuries caused by marshmallows, hot chips and hoverboards.

Hot chip related injuries cost $11,498, while 10 injuries caused by marshmallows cost the country a further $814.

ACC claim descriptions reveal the source of the misfortune, with causes such as "toasting marshmallows, burnt lip" and "cooking hot chip and hot oil spilt on arms."

"I don't think we're that surprised at the weird and wacky ways people get injured," says ACC spokesperson Stephanie Melville.

"I think what's really interesting is it's such an interesting snapshot into the current interests and activities that Kiwis are involved in.

"Things like parkour, hoverboards and pole dancing, which last year didn't generate any claims -- this year we've certainly seen that they're popular pastimes."

ACC paid out 59 claims in 2015 for injuries caused by electric hoverboards, costing the country $25,935.

Ms Melville says almost all of those claims were made after Christmas -- hoverboards were the present-du-jour last year -- as children and parents put their presents to the test.

The figures also reflect the popularity of pole dancing, which is fast becoming mainstream as a way to stay fit for both men and women.

But the statistics suggest pole dancing's just as hard as it looks -- it caused 61 injury claims in 2015, totalling $73,008.

Viva Dance Studios pole instructor Tisha says it needn't be risky, or even risque.

"I'd definitely say it's down the less dangerous end. It does get dangerous when alcohol and bus stop signs are involved, but not in a studio."

Among animal related injuries, the figures show alpacas caused 27 claims last year, costing more than $17,000.

That made alpacas more dangerous than sharks, which hurt 25 people and cost $16,388.

ACC says that's not so surprising.

"If you're going to tell an alpaca his coat would look better on you, you're probably gonna get a hoof in the humerus," says Ms Melville.

Six times as many accidents were caused by rabbits, with more than 150 claims.

But Animates pet store manager Christina Nicol says rabbits are safe, even if they do have one risky feature.

"[Rabbits are] very dangerously cute and cuddly."

Even sneezing can be risky business. It cost the country more $100,000 last year, for claims such as "bent and sneezed, felt pain in lower back", and "cutting vegetables and sneezed, lacerating thumb."

Despite the often amusing circumstances, ACC says there's a serious message behind releasing its list of the most unusual injuries.

"It's basically common sense. [It's about] being aware of your environment, looking out for hazards and not taking risks. "

A simple lesson perhaps -- but one many learn the hard way.

Newshub.

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