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Statistics
Every 18 seconds, a fire department responds to a fire somewhere in the United States.

According to NFPA -Homes with smoke detectors have a 40 - 50% lower death rate.

One fourth of home fires occur between 10 p.m. & 6 a.m., accounting for over half of all home fire deaths.

Smoking materials is the number seven leading cause of residential fires but the number one cause of deaths relating to these fires.

In 2002, over 2500 children under 14 were injured or killed in residential fires.

In 2002, over 1300 children age five or under were injured or killed in residential fires.

In 2002, aproximately 2,500 65 years old and older were injured or killed in residential fires.

85% of all fire deaths occur in the home, where most feel the safest.

Smoking materials were the leading cause of civilian deaths, accounting for roughly one fourth of the total.

Households with non-working smoke alarms now outnumber those with no smoke alarms.

Although children 5 and under make up about 9% of the country�s population, they accounted for 17% of the home fire deaths, assigning them a risk twice the national average.

Adults 65 and older also face a risk twice the average, while people 85 and older have a risk that is almost four and a half times more than the average.

About 70% of all structure fires occur in the home.

About 85% of all fire deaths occur in the home.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is the number one cause of poisoning deaths in the United States. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, "there are approximately 2,100 unintentional deaths from carbon monoxide (CO) every year in the U.S. and the use of carbon monoxide detectors could potentially prevent many of these fatalities.

More than 10,000 carbon monoxide injuries occur annually from this colorless, odorless and tasteless poison.

Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and injuries. These fires often result from unattended cooking.

The National Fire Protection Association recommends that there be at least one fire extinguisher for every 600 square feet of living area.

A fire extinguisher should also be installed in the kitchen, garage and basement.

Two story or higher homes should be equipped with a fire escape ladder. The recommendation is one ladder in every occupied room on floors above the main level, ensure a secure fit to each window and close the door in the room prior to opening the window to avoid inadvertently feeding the fire with air drawn through the window.

Residential fires and related deaths occur more often during cold-weather months, December through February, due to portable or area heating equipment.

Statistics relating to causes and consequences of residential fires provided by NFPA (2002).

Cause Major Cause Fires Civilian Deaths Civilian Injuries Direct Property damage
(in millions)*
Cooking equipment 114,000 (30.5%)
#1
290
(10%)
#4
4,380
(29%)
#1
$503
(9%)
#5
Heating equipment 59,000
(15.8%)
#2
360
(12%)
#3
1,290
(8%)
#6
$663
(12%)
#4
Intentional 38,000
(10.3%)
#3
590
(20%)
#2
1,670
(11%)
#4
$806
(15%)
#2
Open flame, ember, or torch 33,000
(8.9%)
#4
250
(8%)
#5
2,180
(14%)
#2
$829
(15%)
#1
Electrical distribution equipment 32,000
(8.5%)
#5
240
(8%)
#6
970
(6%)
#7
$694
(13%)
#3
Appliance, tool, or air conditioning 21,000
(5.7%)
#6
70
(2%)
#9
650
(4%)
#9
$351
(7%)
#6
Smoking materials 21,000
(5.6%)
#7
690
(23%)
#1
1,740
(11%)
#3
$337
(6%)
#7
Other heat source 17,000
(4.6%)
#8
180
(6%)
#8
740
(5%)
#8
$290
(5%)
#10
Exposure 15,000
(4.1%)
#9
30
(1%)
#11
90
(1%)
#11
$308
(6%)
#8
Child playing 12,000
(3.3%)
#10
210
(7%)
#7
1,300
(9%)
#5
$303
(6%)
#9
Natural causes 6,000
(1.6%)
#11
10
(0%)
#12
60
(0%)
#12
$198
(4%)
#11
Other equipment 4,000
(1.2%)
#12
40
(1%)
#10
220
(1%)
#10
$109
(2%)
#12
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