Data & Sources

Seattle is poised to be one of the first U.S. cities to create a safe consumption space (SCS), a proven and positive solution that reduce deaths and medical issues, restore public safety and community spaces, and connect people who use drugs with resources for treatment. But every day we delay means more deaths. For information about why SCSs are a proven, evidence-based model that can work, go to: https://www.yestoscs.org/why-seattle/

Data for Drug Use Deaths

The content below provides the methodology used for this site.

The King County Heroin and Prescription Opiate Addiction Task Force Report’s publish date of September 15th is on the first page of the report. You can read the report as a free pdf from the KingCounty.gov website.  They also have video and infographics about the report available.

The current number of deaths shown on the home page of delaysmeandeaths.org is an estimate based on data from the previous year. In order to calculate an estimate we use the numbers published on the King County Medical Examiners Office Overdose Deaths Report.

The calculation works like this:

For 2016 we use an estimation. That year King County had 332 overdose deaths. This is 0.9095890411 deaths/day. This multiplied by the 107 days left in the year after the Task Force Report was published totals 97.

For 2017 we use the total from the King County Medical Examiner: 382.

For 2018 we use the total from the King County Medical Examiner: 415.

For 2019 we use an estimation based on the death rate from 2018, which was 1.1369863014 deaths/day.

The website determines how many days have passed since the recommendations were published and then adds the 2016, 2017, and 2018 numbers above to the current calculation of of the the number of deaths to date for 2019. That figure is then rounded down to a whole number.

Note:  Our estimate does not account for the fact that the number of drug-related deaths in King County has increased every year since 2011. The data for 2019 may end up being higher than our estimates..

Sources of stories

The stories included on the site are intended to show the kinds of people being lost are not just numbers – they are our fathers, mothers, sisters, brothers, sons, and daughters, they are our friends, and they are our neighbors.

The stories are submitted through the site on our submit a story page. You are welcome to contribute a story about friends and loved ones who have died in King County from substance use disorder.