Fires kill more Americans each year than all natural disasters combined, and affect people from all backgrounds and geographic locations, according to the American Red Cross. Unlike natural disasters, fires can be prevented. To increase public awareness and encourage a proactive approach to fire safety, the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) is teaming up with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) to promote Fire Prevention Week 2011. The theme for this year’s campaign, taking place October 9-15, 2011, is “It’s Fire Prevention Week. Protect Your Family from Fire!”
Why is fire safety so important? Here are some startling statistics from NFPA:
- Every 23 seconds, a fire department responds to a fire; every 66 seconds, a fire occurs in a structure; and every 87 seconds, a residential fire strikes.
- A fire claims a civilian life every 175 minutes and results in a civilian injury every 31 minutes.
- 63 percent of home fire deaths occur in homes with either no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.
“Electrical failure or malfunction is a leading cause of home fires year after year,” ESFI president Brett Brenner warns. “The best way to prepare for and ideally prevent electrical fires is to be knowledgeable and aware, and Fire Prevention Week is the perfect time to learn about both fire and electrical safety.”
Fires happen every day, and the toll they take on our lives is boundless. Therefore, it is incredibly important to arm yourself and your loved ones with tools and knowledge to prevent them.
ESFI has developed a number of resources to help ensure families everywhere are knowledgeable and prepared before a fire emergency happens. Learn to identify and correct potential fire hazards in your home with the help of ESFI’s Home Safety Checklist or experience what it’s like to escape from a fire with the Virtual Fire Drill.
ESFI’s Fire Prevention Week materials can be downloaded at no cost from www.electrical-safety.org. For more information about Fire Prevention Week, visit the NFPA Web site at www.firepreventionweek.org.