Fire-related Fatalities and Injuries

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) estimates that in the United States:

  • A fire department responds to a fire every 24 seconds
  • One civilian fire-related injury occurs every 34 minutes
  • One civilian fire-related death occurs every 155 minutes

In 2016, fires resulted in 3,390 civilian deaths and 14,650 injuries. In addition, 62,085 firefighters were injured and 69 died while performing their duties in 2016.

Although the number of fire-related deaths has decreased by more than half since 1977, 2016 marks the fourth consecutive increase from the record low number of deaths recorded by NFPA in 2012. The 2016 civilian fire death toll of 3,390 is 3% higher than the 3,280 total in 2015 and 19% higher than the record low number of deaths (2,855) in 2012. The fire death rate per 100,000 population also has shown strong long-term improvement, falling 71% since 1977, from 2.89 to 0.84 in 2016. However, the population death rate has increased 8% since 2012. The graph below shows the vast majority of these deaths resulted from home fires.

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  • Data Table

One- and two-family home fires account for 71% of civilian deaths and 50% of injuries. Apartment structure fires account for 10% of deaths and 23% of injuries.

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  • Data Table
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  • Data Table

Source: Haynes, H.J.G. (September 2017). Fire loss in the United States During 2016. Quincy, MA: National Fire Protection Association.