In recognition of Fire Prevention Week, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) are providing new statistics on fires in American homes and urging consumers to install smoke alarms in their homes and check to make sure all smoke alarms are working properly. It is also vitally important to develop and practice a family fire escape plan.
In a report released today (PDF, 396 Kb), CPSC estimates there were an average of 366,700 unintentional residential fires, 2,310 deaths, 12,550 injuries and more than $7 billion in property damage each year attended by fire service between 2008 and 2010.
The top cause of fires in the home is cooking equipment, accounting for an estimated 147,400 or 40 percent of residential fires each year between 2008 and 2010. Cooking was also associated with the largest percentage of fire-related injuries, an estimated average 27.4 percent or 3,450, in the home.
Home heating and cooling equipment, including portable space heaters, was a top cause of fire deaths, accounting for about nine percent or 210 deaths on average, in homes each year between 2008 and 2010. Portable heaters were associated with 100 of those deaths each year.