Now that summer has arrived in Florida, more barbequing and more time spent at home, combined with hot, dry conditions can create the ideal environment for home fires. Those who are interested in camping and spending time outdoors, too, must obviously worry about fires in forests and other natural environments.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), deaths caused by fires and burns are the fifth most common cause of accidental deaths in the country. In fact, studies have shown that in 2005, across the country, someone died in a fire about every 143 minutes, on average, and someone suffered a personal injury from fire, on average, every 29 minutes.
In 2005 alone, fire departments rushed to 396 000 home fires across the country. Many of these fires were in residential homes and those who succumbed to injuries usually perished from toxic gases or smoke inhalation. In most residential fires, cooking caused the flames. In 2005, home fires resulted in almost $7 billion in property damage. The cost of fatal fire and burn injuries that same year was about $3 billion.
According to statistics, home fires are far more likely to be fatal if there are no smoke alarms in a home. In fact, about half of all deaths in residential fires occur in homes with no alarms. Simply installing smoke alarms can help reduce the chances of personal injuries, burns, and deaths that are caused by fires. In homes with smoke alarms, periodic inspection of the alarms will ensure that the units are working properly.
It is also important to remember that alcohol often plays a role in serious fire-related injuries and deaths. In fact, in about 40% of home fire deaths, alcohol use is thought to play a role. Being responsible can help ensure less injury and less fatalities as a result of fire.
If you or someone you love has been injured by a fire, contact a good Florida attorney. If a fire was caused through negligence or if negligence ensured that adequate help or prevention was not in place, you or your loved one may be entitled to compensation under the law. These proceeds can help with medical costs, rehabilitation costs and with surgery costs to help you and your family heal.