NFPA urges caution when using home heating equipment

NFPA urges caution when using home heating equipment

The National Fire Protection has issued a warning for those using home heating equipment, to avoid unnecessary domestic fires.

The leader in firefighting, the NFPA has urged people to use caution when heating their homes during colder months. For the US specifically, home heating equipment is the second leading cause of home fires and the third leading cause of home fire deaths.

According to the latest U.S. Home Structure Fires report from NFPA, an average of 45,800 home heating fires occurred each year between 2015 and 2019. This resulted in an estimated 480 civilian deaths, 1,350 civilian injuries, and $1 billion in direct property damage.

Lorraine Carli, vice president of outreach and advocacy at NFPA, said: “During the coldest months of the year, home heating equipment kicks into high gear.

“Understanding when and where home heating fires happen is critical, so that they people can take the steps to minimise associated risks and safely heat their homes.”

Space heaters are most often responsible for home heating equipment fires, accounting for more than two in five fires, and the vast majority of associated deaths (81 per cent) and injuries (80 per cent).

Carli added: “Space heaters can be effective tools for heating smaller areas, but they need to be used with caution and care.”

A failure to clean equipment was the leading cause of home heating equipment fires. Fires in which a heat source was too close to combustible materials caused the largest shares of civilian deaths, injuries, and direct property damage. Half of home heating fire deaths were caused by placing equipment too close to things that can burn.

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