1954 Fire Losses Show Small Drop
The nation’s fire losses in 1954 totaled $870,984,000, it was reported recently by the National Board of Fire Underwriters. This is 3.6 per cent less than that for 1953, when estimated monthly losses totaled $903,400,000.
According to the report, the number of fires in urban areas totaled 845,116, a decrease of 8 per cent from 1953, when they totaled 918,304. A refinement of this figure showed that building fires decreased 4.2 per cent, dropping to 399,182 from the previous year’s total of 416,543.
Further analysis indicates that of these 399,182 building fires, a total of 289,379 were in residences and amounted to a decline of 1.8 per cent from the previous year, when they totaled 294,737.
The report found that no pronounced trend in residential fires was discernible by population groups. However, in the manufacturing classification, fires definitely declined in all population groups, with those in cities of one million or more and those of 100,000 to 250,000 showing the greatest decrease. The decreases amounted to 28 per cent in cities of one million or more population and 26 per cent in those of 100,000 to 250,000.
On the other hand, the report pointed out, these two groups of cities were the only’ ones in various population groups to show increases in the number of mercantile fires. The increases amounted to 22 per cent in cities of one million or more, 11 per cent in cities of 100,000 to 250,000.
The over-all decline in mercantile fires throughout the nation amounted to 3.2 per cent when compared with 1953. or 44,610 in 1954 as against 46,083 in 1953.