Even though structural fires are an everyday occurrence, you never expect to find yourself in the middle of an inferno. It’s one thing to see an apartment complex on fire on the local news and another thing entirely to witness your own residence in flames.
Every year in the United States, hundreds of thousands of fires damage and destroy rented residential buildings. Sadly, the destruction often extends far beyond lost property and physical belongings: Many victims are seriously injured and killed in these tragedies.
While nothing can take away the anguish of suffering a life-altering injury or losing a loved one in a domicile blaze, the highly skilled attorneys at Morgan & Morgan may be able to help you make ends meet at this difficult time. Here are some key statistics you should know.
Residential Fire Statistics
The U.S. Fire Administration compiles statistics on residential fires across America. A look at their most recent data reveals the following. In 2017:
- There were an estimated 371,500 residential fires, or more than 1,000 per day.
- Nearly 2,700 people were killed, and 10,825 were injured.
- The leading causes of residential fire deaths included carelessness, intentional fires, no known cause, and smoking.
- In total, residential fires accounted for nearly $7.8 billion in damages.
- Slightly more than half (51.6%) of all fires were due to cooking, followed by heating (9.1%), carelessness (7.1%), and electrical malfunction (6.5%).
- Other common causes of fires included open flames (4.3%), intentional fires (4.2%), other heat (3.3%), appliances (3.1%), smoking (2.1%), and equipment malfunction (2.1%).
The organization analyzed data going back a decade. They found that from 2008 to 2017:
- There was a 2% increase in residential fires and an 8% increase in fatalities in these incidents.
- Injuries decreased by 19%.
- Dollar loss decreased by 20% (the group noted that four multifamily residential building fires contributed to the increase in 2017).
- Cooking was the leading cause of fires over the 10-year period.
- There was a 20% increase in residential cooking fires.
- Heating fires decreased by 30%, and electrical malfunction fires dipped by 14%.
- Careless or unintentional fires were the leading cause of fire deaths in 9 out of 10 years; intentional fires were the second leading cause.
Contact Morgan & Morgan
Tragically, many residential fires are the result of negligence on the part of a property owner. If your landlord didn’t install smoke detectors, sprinklers, and other fire prevention equipment, they may be liable for any damage that ensued. The same holds true if electrical wiring or appliances were defective or not maintained.
If you suffered an injury or lost a loved one in a residential fire, you owe it to yourself to contact Morgan & Morgan. Our highly skilled attorneys can investigate the circumstances of the blaze to identify who was at fault and hold them accountable. Let us handle every step of the process while you focus on healing. Join the Morgan & Morgan family: Schedule a free case evaluation now.