Fire departments respond to a home fire every 86 seconds. While that number might be shocking, many people still overlook fire dangers. A small flame can turn into a major fire in as little as 30 seconds. Your entire home can fill with thick black smoke in minutes, making it difficult to see and breathe. We look at the most common causes of house fires so you can keep your family safe.
What Are the Causes of House Fires?
Although there are many fire risks, there are five main causes of house fires.
Smoking is the number one cause of house fires. They are also the leading cause of home fire deaths. Most smoking fires occur when people fall asleep while smoking. To prevent fires, you should never smoke while laying in bed or when very tired.
Always put out cigarettes in a heavy ashtray and empty it regularly. You should never throw lit cigarettes into the trash. This also goes for cigars, pipe tobacco, and all other smoking materials.
Candles may not seem like much of a fire hazard, but they are one of the top causes of house fires.
Always use a heavy candle holder and keep candles out of reach of children and pets. Also, never burn candles down to the end or leave them burning for extended periods of time.
The best way to prevent candle fires is to put them out before you leave the room. Also, never leave a candle burning when you are sleeping.
Another common cause of house fires, cooking fires are the leading cause of home fire injuries. Cooking is also tied as the second leading cause of death in the home.
To prevent kitchen fires, never walk away from food while you are cooking. If you have a kitchen fire, use a heavy lid to smother the flames.
4. Space Heaters
Tied as the second leading cause of death among all types of residential fires, space heaters and portable heaters are much more likely to cause fires than your furnace.
Always read the instructions and never leave a space heater unattended. You should also never use a space heater while sleeping.
5. Electrical System
Electrical fires are a very wide category, so it’s difficult to identify all of the potential fire dangers. Always hire a professional electrician to make electrical upgrades, even if you feel comfortable doing the work yourself.
Never overload extension cords and outlets or run extension cords under carpeting. Avoid using extension cords with space heaters or toaster ovens. Use the correct wattage of light bulbs in all lamps and light fixtures.
How Do You Limit the Risk of the Common Causes of House Fires?
The best way to limit the risk of the common causes of house fires is with these simple fire prevention tips:
For more fire prevention tips, review our fire safety checklist.
If you have a fire, use your fire extinguisher to give your family time to safely leave your home. Once you are outside, call 911 or the fire department and remain at a safe distance until they give you the all-clear.
We Cleanup Kitchen Fires
We offer fire damage restoration services in Philadelphia and surrounding areas: