In 2017, fire departments in the United States responded to just over 1.3 million fires, which killed an estimated 3,400 civilians and injured 15,000 more. These are the major findings from NFPA's Fire Loss in the U.S. in 2017 report, detailed in a new feature article in the September/October issue of NFPA Journal.
In addition to providing the most recent U.S. fire loss statistics, the article also provides historical context for the numbers. "Home fire deaths reached their peak in 1978, when 6,015 people died in such fires," writes Ben Evarts, a data collection and research manager at NFPA. "The number has trended downward until recent years, with fewer than 5,000 annual deaths since 1982, and less than 4,000 deaths since 1991, with the exception of 1996. Since 2006, home fire deaths have remained below 3,000 per year."
Other notable stats from the article include the amount of property damage caused by fires in the U.S. last year. At an estimated $23 billion, the figure was a large increase from 2016—mostly due to the deadly northern California wildfires that struck in October 2017, resulting in $10 billion in property damage.
Read or listen to an audio version of the article here.