Every year, there are nearly 1.1 million home fires reported in the United States, leaving many people homeless and others injured. House fires can be devastating for any family or individual, especially if they weren’t able to get their belongings out in time. That’s why it’s so important to know the leading causes of house fires and how to prevent them.
Electrical fires are responsible for approximately 15% of home fires each year, and they can be extremely dangerous since they can occur in seconds and are extremely difficult to control. The best way to prevent these types of fires is to make sure all your tools, appliances, and electrical cords are in good condition and that you aren’t overloading outlets, extension cords, or power strips. You should be sure to unplug appliances when they’re not in use and keep your cords from getting tangled or caught up on anything. If you do have an electrical fire, don’t use water to fight it. Instead, shut off the power and call the fire department to report the fire.
Cooking fires account for about 10% of home fires each year, but because they usually occur in the kitchen, they are one of the leading causes of house fires. Oils and grease are major causes of these fires, so it’s important to clean your stove regularly and never leave anything cooking unattended. If you do have a cooking fire, don’t try to put it out with water or a fire extinguisher. Instead, shut off the burners and remove the pan and any food that has burnt. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby or find a nearby fire extinguisher and spray the flames until they’re out.
Appliance explosions are responsible for about 3% of home fires each year. While most of these happen in the kitchen, they can also occur in other rooms of the house, including the garage. Many different appliances can explode, so always read the instructions, know your appliances, and make sure you’re using them safely. If you do have an appliance explosion, shut off the appliance, unplug it, and then apply an ice pack to the area of the explosion. If you’re using a vacuum or washing machine, unplug it first before shutting it off and applying ice to the area.
Careless Use of Flammable Liquids
Flammable liquids are another common cause of house fires, accounting for about 3% of home fires each year. Common culprits include gasoline, paint, and thinner. It’s important to keep these items away from open flames and to keep your house free of dust and debris. If you do have a flammable liquid fire, don’t use water to fight it. Instead, shut off the source of the fire, such as the valve on a gas can, and then use a fire extinguisher to put out the flames.
House fires are also often caused by natural events such as lightning, rolling electrical storms, and wildfires. While you can’t do much to prevent a lightning strike, you can use surge protectors and make sure your roof is free of debris and any broken or cracked windows are repaired. If you do have a wildfire in your area, make sure to have an evacuation plan and know where to go. Also, have fire extinguishers and a First Aid kit on hand.
Preventing House Fires: What You Can Do Right Now
- Here are a few ways you can prevent house fires in your home:
- Make sure all of your appliances are in good working order.
- Use extension cords, power strips, and outlets properly.
- Keep your home clean and free of dust.
- Don’t leave cooking food unattended.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby.
With these tips and tricks in mind, you can make sure your home stays safe and free of fire. Stay vigilant and make these prevention measures a part of your daily routine.
House fires are devastating events that can leave you without a home and all your belongings. Luckily, there are many different ways to prevent house fires from happening. From keeping your appliances in good shape to making sure your home is clean and free of dust, you can greatly reduce the risk of having a house fire. Although these events are rare, they do happen. If they do, the fire and smoke damage restoration experts at Steamatic are here to help.