Home fire research has long shown that it takes only 30 seconds for a small flame to grow to an out of control fire. The fire can fill a house with heavy thick black smoke leaving you only seconds to escape. Smoke and toxic gases produced by fire kill more people than flames. The heat of any fire can kill just as fast. The heat temperature from a fire at floor level reaches 100 degrees, at eye level it reaches as high as 600 degrees. In the United States, a home fire is reported every 86 seconds. The need to have a life-saving home escape plan is essential.

Digital devices proven to be high risk

In recent days, The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc., better known as The Hartford, conducted and released a survey on fire safety and prevention behaviors among the general population. This study is known as the Hartford Home Fire Index, an important part of the 70th anniversary of its Junior Fire Marshal Program. The survey revealed 86 percent of residents across 100 states charge their digital devices overnight and 34 percent admitted to putting themselves at high risk of fire by charging their device on their bed. Amazingly 37 percent of home residents surveyed verified they put themselves at high risk by leaving the room with a candle/s lit.

A National Fire Protection Association survey showed that today one quarter of home fires deaths are started in the bedroom and another quarter of fires happen in the living room, family room, or den.

In 2015, it was estimated that 365,500 homes caught on fire and caused 2,560 deaths, 11,075 residential injuries and caused direct damage costing $7 billion.

Facts don't lie

Other notable facts The Hartford Home Fire Index survey brought to light are; over the past year, one in eight American homes have experience a home fire, 33 percent of home fires are started by children 6-9 years old, and 58 percent of fires were started in the kitchen, due to an absent cook.

The survey also listed the top 100 cities with the highest home fire risk, here are the top 12:

  • Detroit, Mich.
  • Shreveport, La.
  • Boston, Ma.
  • Flint, Mich.
  • Richmond, Va.
  • Trenton, NJ.
  • St. Louis, MO.
  • Tallahassee, Fl.
  • Memphis, Tn.
  • Augusta, Ga.
  • Yonkers, NY.
  • Wilmington, De.

The Hartford pledged to donate $2 million as part of their Junior Marshall Program over the next three years to local school districts and fire departments throughout the U.S.

for fire safety and prevention behavior education, in addition to handing out educational materials to 1.5 million children in kindergarten through third grade. Each of the 100 cities listed as high risk will receive a donation to enhance their fire safety programs.

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