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Characteristics of home fire victims

Report: NFPA's "Home Fire Victims by Age and Gender"
Author: Marty Ahrens
Issued: December 2021


Report highlights

  • During 2015–2019, an estimated annual average of 2,620 civilians died and 11,070 were injured in reported home1 fires. These fires caused 75 percent of all fire deaths and 72 percent of all reported fire injuries in this five-year period.
  • Although people 85 and over had the highest rate of fire death and injuries per million population, they only account for 2 percent of the population. Consequently, the actual number of victims that age is smaller than victims in many lower-risk age groups.
  • Children under 15 accounted for 11 percent of the home fire fatalities and 9 percent of the injuries. Children under five accounted for 5 percent of the deaths and 4 percent of the injuries Children below the age of 5 are now at lower risk of fire death than people 45 and older.
  • While smoking materials were the leading cause of home fire deaths overall, this was true only for people in the 55-84 age groups.
  • Males were more likely to be killed or injured in home fires than females and accounted for larger percentages of the victims. (57 percent of the deaths and 55 percent of the injuries).

1Homes include one- or two-family homes and apartments or other multi-family housing.



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