A recent report on the Smoking-Materials Fire Problem stated that in 2010, 610 civilian deaths resulted from an estimated 90,800 smoking-material fires, a number that is at or near the all-time-low and well down from the 1980 levels in the United States. Several factors can be attributed to this decline over the last 30 years, including a decline in smoking and stricter fire resistant standards on mattresses and upholstered furniture. The most recent drop in the fatalities and injuries, though, owes much to the “fire-safe” cigarette legislation.
It wasn’t until 2003 that U.S. states began requiring that all cigarettes sold must be “fire-safe”, that is, have sharply reduced ignition strength or ability to start fires. By 2010, the fire-safe cigarette legislation was in effect in 47 states. From 2003 to 2010, the number of civilian deaths in smoking material fires fell by an average of 21 percent.
http://www.nfpa.org/gallery/FSC_2map2.htmThis year marks the first year that all 50 state laws are in effect, and a projection linking the percentage decline in fire deaths to the percentage of smokers covered suggest that when the smoking material fire death numbers are analyzed for the year 2012, the reduction in civilian deaths will reach roughly 30 percent. This marks an all-time-low in civilian deaths caused by smoking-material fires since the year 1980; more than 30 years.
“NFPA is very encouraged by these numbers, which show the requirements are having the intended consequences,” said Lorraine Carli (NFPA's VP of Communications). “It is clear that our efforts have already made an impact on public safety and will continue to provide further progress in the years to come.”