Report: NFPA's "Home Fires Involving Heating Equipment"
Author: Richard Campbell
Issued: March 2016
Heating equipment is a leading cause of fires in U.S. homes. These homes included one- and two-family homes (including manufactured homes) and apartments (including townhouses and other multi-family dwellings).
- Heating equipment fires accounted for 16% of all reported home fires in 2009-2013 (second behind cooking) and 19% of home fire deaths (second behind smoking materials).
- Space heaters are the type of heating equipment most often involved in home heating fires, figuring in two of every five of these fires and accounting for 84% of associated civilian deaths, 75% of civilian injuries, and 52% of direct property damage.
- The leading factor contributing to ignition for home heating fire deaths (56%) was heating equipment too close to things that can burn, such as upholstered furniture, clothing, mattress, or bedding.
- The leading factor contributing to home heating fires (30%) was failure to clean, principally from solid-fueled heating equipment, primarily chimneys.