1. #1
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    Jul 1999
    Flanders, NJ

    Default USFA Report on Older Americans and Fire Deaths

    USFA Releases Fire and the Older Adult Report

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - Adults age 65 and older are 2.5 times more likely to
    die in fires than the overall population, and as Americans age, their
    fire risk increases, according to a new report issued today by the
    Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Fire Administration (USFA).

    "Fires occurring in the home and in various health care settings for
    older adults are often preventable," said Charlie Dickinson, Deputy
    United States Fire Administrator. "Because the older adult population
    accounts for a substantial portion of the nation's fire deaths and
    injuries, it's important that we take steps to reduce this fire

    The report, Fire and the Older Adult, was developed by the National Fire
    Data Center, part of the U.S. Fire Administration, and is based on
    research from a variety of public and private organizations and data
    from the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), National
    Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), U.S. Census Bureau, the Federal
    Interagency Forum on Aging-Related Statistics, and the Department of
    Health and Human Services' Administration on Aging. The report analyzes
    the fire risk to persons age 65 and older as a complement to the USFA's
    Fire Safety Campaign for People 50-Plus. The report provides an
    extensive review of the fire situation for older adults in the United
    States and evaluates fire risk factors and risks of fire injury and
    fatality among that population group.

    According to 2002 NFIRS data, 34 percent of the people who died in
    residential structure fires and 14 percent of the people who were
    injured were age 65 and older.

    A copy of the full report can be downloaded from:

  2. #2
    Forum Member

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    Aug 2005


    Interesting report. Also, last year one issue of fire protection engineering magazine had a good article on fire and the elderly, and some of the unique fire risks involved.

  3. #3
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    nozzelvfd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003


    Older people (seniors) are the opposite of kids. While kids run and hide, seniors want to get out, the problem is they may not be fast enough do to several factors (medical problems, confined to a wheel chair, bed ridden, etc) and they become disorientated faster under smoke filled conditions. It is important for everyone to have at least 1 working smoke detector in their house, but for seniors it is extremely important. The faster they can be alerted to a fire, the faster they can escape.
    You need only two tools: WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and it should, use WD-40. If it moves and shouldn't, use the duct tape.

  4. #4
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    DaSharkie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2000


    Even more important to have sprinklers in the growing number of residential communities and assisted living centers that pop up all over.

    When I was still on the job we were second due unit to a HUGE 4 story WOODEN construction assisted living center that was being completed. The contractors designing and company paying for it fought the fire department's push for a sprinkler system in the sturcture very hard, to the point that the State Fire Marshall's office got involved and finally got them to put a residential (read PVC piping) sprinkler system in.

    Blows my mind that these people who are supposed to "care" only "care" about the money that they can get to come in, and not about lives.
    "Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." Will Rogers

    The borrower is slave to the lender. Proverbs 22:7 - Debt free since 10/5/2009.

    "No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session." - New York Judge Gideon Tucker

    "As Americans we must always remember that we all have a common enemy, an enemy that is dangerous, powerful and relentless. I refer, of course, to the federal government." - Dave Barry

    www.daveramsey.com www.clarkhoward.com www.heritage.org

  5. #5
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    Dave1983's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Gator Country


    Not surprising. Reaction times increase as we get older. Combine that with decreases in senses (hearing/sight) and mobility and you have these numbers. Its probably going to get worse as the baby boomers get older.
    Fire Marshal/Safety Officer


    "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
    RUSH-Tom Sawyer

    Success is when skill meets opportunity
    Failure is when fantasy meets reality

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