Fire Deaths in U.S. Homes Drop 9%, But Most People Die in Homes

QUINCY, Mass.

Fire deaths in homes across the United States dropped 9 percent in 2001 from the previous year, according to a recent report from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). In all, more than 3,000 people died in home fires while more than 3,000 fire fatalities took place elsewhere. (Of these deaths, approximately 2,400 occurred due to the terrorist attacks.)

Nationwide, the NFPA says there was a home fire death every 170 minutes in 2001, compared with every 153 minutes for the previous year. Other major findings from the report include an estimated $43 billion loss in direct property damage as a result of fire. Approximately $5 billion occurred from fires in homes and about $3 billion in other structure fires, excluding the events of Sept. 11.

Overall since 1978, the NFPA says there has been a decline in home fires by nearly half in 2001. “We believe the decline in home fire deaths as evidenced from last years’ data is attributed to increasing public-safety education coupled with advances in fire-safety technology,” says John Hall, NFPA’s assistant vide president for fire analysis and research. To access the report, visit www.nfpa.org.

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