NFPA launches electrical safety initiative

Published on May 5, 2008
Resource toolkit and new cartoon PSA aimed at reducing a leading cause of home fires

May 5, 2008 – The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) kicked off National Electrical Safety Month with the debut of a new electrical safety initiative. “Keeping Your Community Safe and Energized” is a collection of educational resource materials for area fire departments on electrical safety which includes an entertaining public service announcement (PSA) video. The PSA features newly created animated character Dan Doofus.

“You could say that electricity practically runs our lives when you think of all the modern day necessities that need it, yet most people are unaware that electrical problems are factors in nearly 150 home fires each day,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA vice president of communications. “Electricity is a leading cause of home fires, but there are things that people can do to avoid these fires. The information in this toolkit can help individuals learn how to protect themselves and their property.”

According to NFPA’s newly released report on electrical fires, electrical failures or malfunctions result in an average of 53,600 home fires each year. These fires cause more than 500 deaths, injure 1,400 people and account for $1.4 billion in property damage.

A copy of the resource toolkit in compact disc (CD) format was distributed to 30,000 fire departments nationwide and materials are available at no cost at NFPA’s Web site at Printable materials in the toolkit include: facts and figures on electrical fires, handouts, public service print ads, a 60-second PSA starring Dan Doofus that is suitable for all ages, and a variety of other communications tools. View the Dan Doofus PSA.

In addition to serving as a source for public education materials on electrical safety and research findings on fires involving electricity, NFPA has a long history of commitment to electrical safety as developer and publisher of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) since 1911. The NEC sets the standard for the safe use of electricity and electrical installations. It is most widely used code for the built-environment in the world.

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NFPA has been a worldwide leader in providing fire, electrical, building, and life safety to the public since 1896. The mission of the international nonprofit organization is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating consensus codes and standards, research, training, and education.