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Facts of Fires

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house fire

Facts of Fires

Smoke, gas and toxic fumes are responsible for most fire deaths

Last year, 34% of fire-related deaths in Britain were caused by the victim being overcome by gas, smoke or toxic fumes.; 30% were caused by burns alone; 19% were caused by a combination of both.

There are approximately 7,000 chimney fires a year in England

Sweeping your chimney regularly (around 3 times a year) and using fuel that has been dried out during the summer months, will lower the risk of a chimney fire occurring.

Fire fatality rates are four times higher for people aged 80 and over

This is why it’s important to ensure elderly friends and relatives have working smoke detectors, a clear emergency escape route.

Arson is the single largest cause of all fires

The most common targets are vehicles, (10,600 in 2012 – 2103)

Males are more likely to die in a house fire than females are

This gap is, however, beginning to close.

The top cause of accidental house fires is the misuse of equipment or appliances, with 13,900 cases recorded in 2012-13

Other top causes include faulty leads and appliances; careless handling of hot substances; chip pan/fat fires and placing items to close to sources of heat.

The most dangerous days for a house fire occur around Christmas

The worst days are Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Other high risk days include Halloween and Bonfire Night.

There are more fires during the winter months

This is because during the colder and darker months, people use their heating and lighting devices more.

Most house fires occur in winter months, with 13% occurring January, and 12% occurring in February.

A house fire reaches 600˚F at eye level

This is hot enough to kill you, melt your clothes and cause severe burns without you having to come in direct contact with a flame.

House fires reach 100˚F near the floor

This is one of the reasons why you should stay low when evacuating a burning building; another reason is to avoid smoke inhalation.

Poorer children are more likely to die in a house fire

Contributing factors include poorer housing, overcrowding, clutter due to lack of space and parents who are more likely to smoke.

You’re more than twice as likely to die in a fire if you don’t have a working smoke alarm

You should test them each week, and replace the alarm batteries every year.

When escaping a fire, you might not be able to see

The dark smoke produced by a fire obscures your vision and blocks out light. To ensure you can escape a burning building, keep a torch by your bed and keep your escape route clear.

Children sleep through smoke alarms

Younger children sleep through alarms because they produce more melatonin – a hormone that induces sleep. During puberty, the amount of this hormone produced declines.

Sprinkler systems actually reduce water damage

When a fire breaks out, sprinkler systems use 50-100 litres of water per minute. It sounds like a lot, but the fire service use 1,000 – 2,000 litres per minute! Having a sprinkler system installed also keeps the fire at bay, so the firefighters don’t have to use as much water fighting it.

Smoke, gas and toxic fumes are responsible for most fire deaths

Last year, 34% of fire-related deaths in Britain were caused by the victim being overcome by gas, smoke or toxic fumes.; 30% were caused by burns alone; 19% were caused by a combination of both.

There are approximately 7,000 chimney fires a year in England

Sweeping your chimney regularly (around 3 times a year) and using fuel that has been dried out during the summer months, will lower the risk of a chimney fire occurring.

Fire fatality rates are four times higher for people aged 80 and over

This is why it’s important to ensure elderly friends and relatives have working smoke detectors, a clear emergency escape route.

Arson is the single largest cause of all fires

The most common targets are vehicles, (10,600 in 2012 – 2103)

Males are more likely to die in a house fire than females are

This gap is, however, beginning to close.

The top cause of accidental house fires is the misuse of equipment or appliances, with 13,900 cases recorded in 2012-13

Other top causes include faulty leads and appliances; careless handling of hot substances; chip pan/fat fires and placing items to close to sources of heat.

The most dangerous days for a house fire occur around Christmas

The worst days are Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Other high risk days include Halloween and Bonfire Night.

There are more fires during the winter months, with 13% occurring January, and 12% occurring in February.

This is because during the colder and darker months, people use their heating and lighting devices more.

A house fire reaches 600˚F at eye level

This is hot enough to kill you, melt your clothes and cause severe burns without you having to come in direct contact with a flame.

House fires reach 100˚F near the floor

This is one of the reasons why you should stay low when evacuating a burning building; another reason is to avoid smoke inhalation.

Poorer children are more likely to die in a house fire

Contributing factors include poorer housing, overcrowding, clutter due to lack of space and parents who are more likely to smoke.

You’re more than twice as likely to die in a fire if you don’t have a working smoke alarm.

You should test them each week, and replace the alarm batteries every year.

When escaping a fire, you might not be able to see

The dark smoke produced by a fire obscures your vision and blocks out light. To ensure you can escape a burning building, keep a torch by your bed and keep your escape route clear.

Children sleep through smoke alarms

Younger children sleep through alarms because they produce more melatonin – a hormone that induces sleep. During puberty, the amount of this hormone produced declines.

Sprinkler systems actually reduce water damage

When a fire breaks out, sprinkler systems use 50-100 litres of water per minute. It sounds like a lot, but the fire service use 1,000 – 2,000 litres per minute! Having a sprinkler system installed also keeps the fire at bay, so the firefighters don’t have to use as much water fighting it.

Photo credit: OldOnliner via photopincc


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