Fire Safety Statistics from NFPA
"Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week”
- In 2011, U.S. fire departments responded to 370,000 home structure fires. These fires caused 13,910 civilian injuries, 2,520 civilian deaths, $6.9 billion in direct damage.
- On average, seven people die in U.S. home fires per day.
- Cooking is the leading cause home fires and home fire injuries, followed heating equipment. Smoking is a leading cause of civilian home fire deaths.
- Most fatal fires kill one or two people. In 2011, 12 home fires killed five or more people resulting in a total of 67 deaths.
- 61 firefighters were fatally injured while on duty at fires
On average, a fire department responded to:
- A fire every 23 seconds,
- A structure fire every 65 seconds,
- An outside fire every 46 seconds,
- And a vehicle fire every 144 seconds.
- Fire claimed nine lives every day.
In 2011, home structure fires caused 84% of the civilian fire deaths and 79% of the civilian fire injuries. Homes include one-and two-family homes, apartments, townhouses, row houses, and manufactured homes.
Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries. Unattended cooking is the leading factor contributing to these fires. Frying is the leading type of activity associated with cooking fires. More than half of all cooking fire injuries occurred when people tried to fight the fire themselves.
Smoking has been the leading cause of home fire deaths for decades. More than two-thirds (66%) of the home smoking material fire fatalities resulted from fires originating with a) upholstered furniture, or b) mattresses or bedding.
Heating equipment was involved in one of every five home fire deaths. Heating equipment ranked second in reported home fires, home fire deaths and home fire injuries. Portable and fixed space heaters, including wood stoves, are involved in more fires than central heat. These fires are also more likely than central heating fires to result in death.
Intentional fires are the third leading cause of home fires. According to FBI statistics, roughly half of the people arrested for arson in recent years were under 18.
Electrical distribution or lighting equipment was the fourth leading cause of home fires. A study by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) found that homes with older wiring face an increased risk of electrical wiring fire.
Candles were the fifth leading cause of home fire injuries. These fires nearly tripled from 1990 to 2001 with the increase in candle sales but have since fallen back to the mid 1990’s levels. Candles used for light in the absence of electrical power caused 1/3 of fatal candle fires
Fire Prevention Week themes over the years
1957 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1958 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1959 Fire Prevention is Your Job…Too
1960 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1961 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1962 Fire Prevention is Your Job…Too
1963 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1964 Fire Prevention is Your Job…Too
1965 Don't Give Fire a Place to Start
1966 Fight Fire
1967 Fire Hurts
1968 Fire Hurts
1969 Fire Hurts
1970 Fire Hurts
1971 Fire Hurts
1972 Fire Hurts
1973 Help Stop Fire
1974 Things That Burn
1975 Learn Not to Burn
1976 Learn Not to Burn
1977 Where There's Smoke, There Should Be a Smoke Alarm
1978 You Are Not Alone!
1979 Partners in Fire Prevention
1980 Partners in Fire Prevention
1981 EDITH (Exit Drills In The Home)
1982 Learn Not To Burn - Wherever You Are
1983 Learn Not To Burn All Through the Year
1984 Join the Fire Prevention Team
1985 Fire Drills Save Lives at Home at School at Work
1986 Learn Not to Burn: It Really Works!
1987 Play It Safe…Plan Your Escape
1988 A Sound You Can Live With: Test Your Smoke Detector
1989 Big Fires Start Small: Keep Matches and Lighters in the Right Hands
1990 Keep Your Place Firesafe: Hunt for Home Hazards
1991 Fire Won't Wait...Plan Your Escape.
1992 Test Your Detector - It's Sound Advice!
1993 Get Out, Stay Out: Your Fire Safe Response
1994 Test Your Detector For Life
1995 Watch What You Heat: Prevent Home Fires!
1996 Let's Hear It For Fire Safety: Test Your Detectors!
1997 Know When to Go: React Fast to Fire
1998 Fire Drills: The Great Escape!
1999 Fire Drills: The Great Escape!
2000 Fire Drills: The Great Escape!
2001 Cover the Bases & Strike Out Fire
2002 Team Up for Fire Safety
2003 When Fire Strikes: Get Out! Stay Out!
2004 It's Fire Prevention Week! Test Your Smoke Alarms
2005 Use Candles With Care. When You Go Out, Blow Out!
2006 Prevent Cooking Fires: Watch What You Heat
2007 It's Fire Prevention Week! Practice Your Escape Plan
2008 It's Fire Prevention Week! Prevent Home Fires
2009 Stay Fire Smart! Don't Get Burned
2010 Smoke Alarms: A Sound You Can Live With
2011 It's Fire Prevention Week! Protect Your Family From Fire!
2012 Have 2 Ways Out!
2013 Prevent Kitchen Fires
2014 Smoke Alarms Save Lives: Test Yours Every Month
2015 Hear The Beep Where You Sleep. Every Bedroom Needs a Working Smoke Alarm!
2016 Don’t Wait – Check the Date! Replace Smoke Alarms Every 10 Years