Casualty (person)

person who is wounded, incapacitated, or killed in an event

A casualty in military usage is a person in military service, who becomes unavailable for duty due to death or injury.[1] It also includes illness, capture, desertion, etc.; or a civilian casualty.

In civilian usage the word "casualty" is properly used for a person who is killed, wounded or injured by some event.[2] It is usually used to describe multiple deaths and injuries due to violent incidents or disasters. Casualties is sometimes loosely used to mean fatalities, but non-fatal injuries are also casualties.[3]


  1. Dictionary of Military Terms, ed. Richard Bowyer (Teddington, Middlesex: Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, 1999), p. 32
  2. Counting Civilian Casualties: An Introduction to Recording and Estimating Nonmilitary Deaths in Conflict, eds. Taylor B. Seybolt; Jay D. Aronson; Baruch Fischhoff (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), p. 57
  3. Richard Feldman, Transportation Expressions (1996) (United States; Bureau of Transportation Statistics 1996-06-01), p. 133