Fire Statistics

No one would want to lose life or property because of occurrence of fire at the workplace or at home. The loss due to fire can be devastating, and, thus, businesses must put procedures in place to reduce the risk of it in an attempt to protect life and property. The risks due to fire vary depending on the nature of the working environment (Bellamy, 2015). In this case, business owners need to have appropriate knowledge concerning their environment to identify fire risks and hazards in the premises. Before the commencement of any venture, entrepreneurs need to conduct a site survey in order to identify the most appropriate fire protection equipment. The United States Fire Administration (USFA) collects fire-related data to provide information and analysis on the fire problem in the country. It has provided statistics concerning the causes of fire so that the fire departments can use this information to create a baseline for evaluating programs, increasing awareness, and educating the public on appropriate mitigation strategies.

According to USFA, faulty electrics are the major causes of fire at the workplace. They may be loose wires or plugs that people have overloaded. Companies should make sure that the necessary professionals take good care of any electrical equipment and portable appliances. Apart from that, flammable and combustible materials pose a major threat to the employees and the business. Statistics by USFA show that the threat is particularly true of premises that hold any number of materials that are flammable. In such a scenario, any act that can cause fire such as cigarette smoking may lead to severe damage when the combustible equipment catches fire. Additionally, information on the USFA fire statistics page reveals that human error is also a primary cause of fire. Some employees may be involved in accidents that involve knocking a liquid on electrical equipment or spilling highly combustible liquids (Veland & Aven, 2015). However, as the data suggests, many fire incidents that result from human error mainly occur in companies that have notified their staff about the way to handle some of the combustible equipment.

Furthermore, the author of the USFA fire statistics page points out that general negligence also leads to fire incidents. While it may be similar to human error, the author argues that workers cause fire in organizations due to failure to follow proper procedures when undertaking an action that is a potential fire threat. Employees can avoid such instances if they adhere to all instructions when handling various materials at the place of work. Equally, arson can lead to workplace fires. From the USFA fire statistics page, one can note that it is a relatively frequent occurrence. Due to an increase in the number of arsonists, factories and industrial estates are prone to vandalisms.

Fire departments can use the data regarding causes of fire in the U.S. to develop strategies for eliminating community risks associated with fire. In my community, the fire department can study the data concerning the main causes of fire to develop solutions that directly relate with the problem. The data presented on the USFA fire statistics can be particularly useful in helping to prevent fire accidents in the future. For instance, the outreach program members can assess faulty electrics as a major cause of fires. By studying data related to this element, they can advise companies to conduct regular tests to ensure that all electric equipment are in good working condition. People can also use the statistics to support a public outreach program by advising on appropriate storage, correct disposal, and in-depth processes for handling flammable materials (Bellamy, 2015). The fire department can use the statistics to help businesses fit fireproof shutters and water sprinkler system to protect properties from arsonists who cause workplace fires.

The statistics that show the main causes of fire in the workplace can be helpful for anyone wishing to design a study for the community affected by fire. For me, I would structure the research based on the five main causes of fire. First, I would check whether every workplace in the community under study has legally obliged to take good care of any electrical equipment. Second, I would ascertain whether workers adhere to appropriate storage and disposal of flammable products. Third, I would check the rate of error for the human resources within the community under study. I would observe whether the workers have the habit of knocking liquid onto electrical equipment or spilling combustible liquids among others. Moreover, I would include general negligence in my study by checking whether the members of staff follow proper procedures when handling products that have a potential for a fire hazard. Lastly, I would analyze different businesses to assess the security measures they have utilized to prevent fire by arsonists. In particular, I would check whether companies have fireproof shutters, fire sprinkler system, and CCTV installation among others. All these observations will help me to make conclusions regarding whether the community under study can comfortably avoid fire incidents.

About the Author: Russell White