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Fire, Flames or Smoke

The best way to protect the people and things that you care about from fire is to stop the fire from happening in the first place. There are some simple ways you can prevent a fire from starting. In Utah, most fires occur while cooking, also causing the most fire-related injuries. Candles, heating, and children using matches and lighters are common causes of fires and fire-related injuries and deaths as well.

Make a plan to get out of your home, school, and workplace in case of a fire. Practice your plan twice each year. For more on fire drill plans, see the Basic Fire Escape Planning

National Facts (You might be surprised at some of these!)

  • On average, 7 people die in U.S. home fires each day.
  • In 2015, 365,500 structure fires were reported causing 2,560 deaths, 11,075 injuries and $7 billion in property damage.
  • Most victims of fires die from smoke or toxic gases and not from burns.
  • Smoking is the leading cause of fire-related deaths.
  • Alcohol use contributes to an estimated 40% of residential fire deaths. 
  • Cooking is the primary cause of residential fires.
  • Approximately 3 out of 5 home fire deaths occur in homes without smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.
  • Most residential fires occur during the winter months. 
  • The average person can expect five home fires in a lifetime.
  • One of every ten people will suffer an injury related to a household fire during their lifetime.

Injuries sustained from fires and burns cost the United States about $14.3 billion each year.

Groups at increased risk of fire-related injuries and deaths include:

  • Children 4 and under
  • Older Adults ages 65 and older
  • The poorest Americans
  • Persons living in rural areas
  • Persons living in manufactured homes or substandard housing

Prevent fires in your home with these resources:

Sources:

  • Karter MJ. Fire loss in the United States during 2008,. Quincy (MA): National Fire Protection Association, Fire Analysis and Research Division; 2009.
  • Ahrens M. Home structure fires. Quincy (MA): National Fire Protection Association; 2009a.
  • Finkelstein EA, Corso PS, Miller TR, Associates. Incidence and Economic Burden of Injuries in the United States. New York: Oxford University Press; 2006.
  • Flynn JD.  Characteristics of home fire victims. Quincy (MA): National Fire Protection Association; 2008.
  • Fire Analysis and Research Division. A few facts at the household level. Quincy (MA): National Fire Protection Association; 2009
  • Fires in the U.S. Quincy (MA): National Fire Protection Association; 2015
  • National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and National Safety Council


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