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|State Fire Marshal Shares Electrical Safety Tips|
Simple safety precautions make big difference in home fire safety
NASHVILLE, TN – Residential electrical fires kill as many as 280 Americans each year and injure 1,000 more. Some of these fires are caused by electrical system failures, but many more are caused by incorrectly installed wiring and overloaded circuits and extension cords.
“Many avoidable electrical fires can be traced to the misuse of electric cords, whether through overloaded circuits, poor maintenance or cords being placed under rugs or in high traffic areas,” says State Fire Marshal and Commerce and Insurance Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak. “Simple safety precautions can reduce these occurrences and help safeguard your home from fires.”
During a typical year in the United States, home electrical problems account for 26,100 fires and $1 billion in property losses. The bedroom is the leading area of fire origin for residential building electrical fires. However, electrical fires that begin in the living room/family room/den areas result in the most deaths. Most electrical distribution fires result from problems with "fixed wiring" such as faulty electrical outlets and old wiring. Problems with cords (such as extension and appliance cords), plugs, receptacles and switches also cause many home electrical fires. Light fixtures and lamps/light bulbs are also among the leading causes of electrical fires.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) would like consumers to know that there are simple steps to take to prevent electrical fires.
Finally, the State Fire Marshal’s Office urges Tennesseans to have working smoke alarms installed in their homes and to develop and practice a home fire escape plan with two ways out of every room and a common outside meeting place.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office is a division of the Department of Commerce and Insurance, which works to protect consumers while ensuring fair competition for industries and professionals who do business in Tennessee. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.