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ƒ The American Red Cross responded to
more than 74,000 disasters in
communities across the United States last
year and 93 percent of these were fire
ƒ The American Red Cross is responding to
10 percent more home fires today than it
was six years ago.*
ƒ Nationally, the number of home fires is on
the rise with the number of fires
increasing 8 percent since 2000. The
average cost of a home fire in 2006 was
more than $17,000.***
ƒ Eighty percent of Americans don’t realize
that home fires are the single most
common disaster across the nation.*
ƒ Only 26 percent of families have actually
developed and practiced a home fire
escape plan.*
ƒ Fires kill more Americans each year than
all natural disasters combined, and affect
people from all backgrounds and
geographic locations.
ƒ In 2006, a home fire was reported every
80 seconds, and someone dies from a
home fire every 204 minutes.***
ƒ Children under five and adults over 65 are
more than twice as likely to die in a home
fire than the rest of the US population.**
ƒ African Americans in this country are
disproportionately affected by home fires,
and account for 25 percent of all fire
deaths while they represent less than 13
percent of the population.**
ƒ Cooking fires are the leading cause of
home fires and home fire injuries. And,
two out of three cooking fires start with
the range or stove.***
ƒ Heating fires are the second leading
cause of home fires.**
ƒ Smoking is the leading cause of home fire
ƒ In 2005, 74 percent of home fire deaths
occurred in homes with no smoke alarms
or no working smoke alarms.***
ƒ Sprinklers and smoke alarms together cut
your risk of dying in a home fire 82% in
relation to having neither.**
ƒ Each year over 200 people die from
carbon monoxide produced by fuel
burning appliances in the home including
furnaces, ranges, water heaters and room
ƒ High-rise fires are more injurious and cause
more damage than all other structure fires.
Sources: American Red Cross,* U.S. Fire Administration,** and the National Fire Protection Association.***

Fact Sheet on Home FIres

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