In light of changes in patient demographics together with constant developments in burn care, the predictive accuracy of the Abbreviated Burns Severity Index (ABSI) - first described in 1982 - for estimating the mortality of present day burns patients, may be questionable. We reviewed the records of 2813 burns patients treated between January 1968 and December 2008 in the intensive care unit at our institution, aiming to identify emerging discrepancies between the estimated and calculated outcome, based on each of the ABSI variables and the total burn score. The predictive value of each of the defined ABSI variables was confirmed to be highly significant. Univariable and multivariable analysis revealed an exponential increase in odds ratio (OR) for mortality for patients older than 60 years and more than 30% TBSA burned and showed OR values over 10 times higher than other significant variables like inhalation injury. Nevertheless, the ABSI for the estimation of mortality in our entire patient collective was highly accurate and could not be optimised by adapting the point distribution to the increase in OR. Our data indicates that despite significant changes in patient demographics and medical advances over the past 30 years, the ABSI scoring system is still an accurate and valuable tool in the prediction of burn patient mortality.