Causes of Death, by Nathan Yau is an interactive chart showing you the statistical odds, in percentages by age, of different causes of death. For example, the chance that you will die of cancer peaks in your 60′s and 70′s. External causes of death include falls, poisoning, drowning, motor vehicle accidents, firearms and any other accidental deaths. The odds of an external death are greatest in your youth: teens, 20′s, and 30′s.
Click on the bars at the top of the graph (scroll down the page to see the interactive chart). You can view the data by gender or race. Women are less likely to die by external causes. Maybe men take more risks or engage in more dangerous leisure activities. Age affects causes of death a great deal. But these are percentages. The decrease in risk of cancer deaths in teens and 20′s may be more due to the increase in accidental (external) causes of death, rather than an improvement in cancer risk.
Visit the CDC website here, for a more detailed look at the data: