In 2022, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) released a report about warehouse fires based on data gathered from 2016 through 2020. This report contains some interesting information about warehouse fires. It outlines some of the most common causes, as well as how different factors contribute to civilian injuries and property damage.
According to the report, “local fire departments responded to an average of 1,450 structure fires per year at warehouse properties in the US.” This is approximately 4 warehouse fires per day. On average, these and $283 million in direct property damage.”
It turns out that the time-of-day matters. Fewer fires took place during off-hours, with the majority of fires happening between noon and 6 p.m.—31% of warehouse fires took place during this period. However, in the case of direct property damage, 45% were caused by fires that occurred between midnight and 6 a.m. Civilian injuries are at their highest between 6 a.m. and noon at 46%.
So. what causes these fires?
Electrical distribution and lighting equipment account for most warehouse fires at 18%. Not only are these the most common cause of warehouse fires, but they are also responsible for 31% of direct property damage. Electrical failures and malfunctions were reported to cause 24% of civilian injuries, making these some of the worst fires to happen at your facility.
60% of warehouse fires are unintentional, occurring due to an accident, by faulty equipment, or other unintended source. However, NFPA found that arson accounted for 15% of warehouse fires. Intentional fires also account for 23% of civilian injuries, as compared to unintentional fires causing 66% of civilian injuries. It doesn’t seem like much in comparison, but 15% of warehouse fires account for 23% of injuries, which is a statistic that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
How to Protect Your Warehouse & Staff
Knowing that electrical issues cause the most fires and the most direct property damage, it’s critical to make sure you are getting inspections done on your wiring and electrical equipment regularly. Staying up to code can help prevent a serious fire.
These findings point out the importance of having automatic fire alarm and sprinkler systems along with portable fire extinguishers to ensure that your facility is protected from every fire, no matter the cause or when the fire takes place.
Finally, don’t forget to implement important fire safety training for staff and do regular drills and training to ensure that everyone knows how to respond in the event of a fire. This can significantly mitigate the damage done to your facility and lower the risk of civilian injuries.
Fire Protection Services from Fireline
Whether you need smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, or an automatic sprinkler system installed at your commercial property, Fireline has you covered. We have been protecting people and property from fire damage since 1947—and our experience shows in our excellent work! We are known for our superb customer service, our expertise, and our reliability. For more information on how we can help your residential or commercial property, visit us online or give us a call at (800) 553-3405. We are in Baltimore, MD, with a second office in Leesburg, VA. For more fire safety tips, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.