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Home cooking fires

Report: NFPA's "Home Cooking Fires"
Author: Marty Ahrens
Issued: November 2018

 

 

Report highlights

  • U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 172,100 home structure fires per year started by cooking activities in 2012-2016, or an average of 471 home cooking fires per day. These fires caused an average of 530 civilian deaths, 5,270 reported civilian fire injuries, and $1.1 billion in direct property damage per year.
  • Home fires caused by cooking peaked at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
  • Ranges or cooktops were involved in the 63% of reported home cooking fires, 86% of cooking fire deaths and 79% of cooking fire injuries.
  • Households that use electric ranges have a higher risk of cooking fires and associated losses than those using gas ranges.
  • Unattended cooking was the leading cause of cooking fires and casualties. Clothing was the item first ignited in less than 1% of these fires, but clothing ignitions led to 15% of the home cooking fire deaths.
  • One-third of the people killed by cooking fires were sleeping at the time. More than half of the non-fatal injuries occurred when people tried to control the fire themselves.
Related information

graph showing leading factors in home cooking fires 

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