Fire officials have pointed to a menorah as the cause of a Brooklyn home fire that claimed the lives of a mother and her three children. The family's father and other children were injured in the fire, reported The New York Times. Two days later, in another part of New York, another fire killed a man and three children. The cause is still under investigation, reports the Associated Press.
Jerry DeLuca, executive director and CEO of the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs, offered the following statement on these tragedies to NFPA: "This week as we concluded the celebration of Hanukkah and prepare for Christmas, seven New Yorkers have once again been the tragic victims of fire. From Brooklyn to Stockholm in Northern New York, we have seen the senseless loss of life that may have been prevented if homes were equipped with home fire sprinklers. At this time of year, fatal fires seem to have an even greater impact on all of us; the families are dealing with loss at a time they are supposed to be celebrating and the firefighters who respond are also impacted as they confront their own feelings and emotions. As the fire service, we must speak out and speak up to ensure that the decision makers take action to improve fire safety, require home fire sprinklers, and prevent such tragedies from continuing to occur."
Your own voice can be a powerful force to help end these tragedies. If home fires happen in your region, speak out. Use our "tips on communicating home fire sprinklers to the media" document to help you.