Number of large-loss fires up by more than 54 percent in 2007

Published on November 7, 2008
NFPA Journal publishes article on large-loss fires

November 7, 2008 – Findings from the soon-to-be released report Large-Loss Fires in the United States 2007 are featured in the latest issue of NFPA Journal, the official magazine of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Each year, NFPA publishes details on large-loss fires and explosions in the United States that each resulted in property damage of at least $5 million. There were 25 more large-loss fires in 2007 than in the previous year, accounting for an increase of more than 54 percent.

In 2007, 71 fires occurred that resulted in losses of $5 million or more, compared to 46 in 2006.  These fires accounted for less than one percent of the estimated number of fires in 2007, but accounted for 24 percent of the total estimated dollar loss from fires.

Other key findings from the report:

  • Large-loss fires killed 19 civilians, injured 168 firefighters and 67 civilians.
  • Large-loss fires resulted in $3.5 billion in direct property loss in 2007. (Total fire loss for 2007 was $14.6 billion.)
  • Property loss from large-loss fires was up by almost $3 billion in 2007.
  • Most of the increase in dollar loss in 2007 is attributed to the Southern California Firestorm.
  • The Southern California Firestorm was one of 20 fires that caused more than $20 million in property damage.  It was also one of five fires that resulted in a loss of more than $100 million.

NFPA Journal’s November/December issue also includes the following features:

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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.

Contact: Lorraine Carli, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275