Report: Most burns not due to fire


With the theme of this year’s Fire Prevention Week being “Stay Fire Smart! Don’t Get Burned”, data from a new NFPA report can help you arm your community with important information about their risk of burns.

According to a new report issued by NFPA’s Marty Ahrens, only 13% of burn injuries that were treated at emergency rooms in 2008 were due to fire or flames. The report, citing data from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, says that 216,000 people went to emergency rooms last year for treatment of burn injuries. The majority of those burns (55%) were thermal burns, most often resulting from contact with hot objects. Other types of burn injuries seen in emergency rooms included scalds (28%), chemical burns (8%), radiation burns (6%), and electrical burns (2%).

Marty’s report also addresses the age of people who were treated for burns in the emergency room. Compared to other age groups, children under the age of five face the highest risk of non-fire thermal burns, scald, chemical, and electrical burns. People over 65 had the lowest rate for these burns, but the highest rate of home civilian fire deaths.

Download Marty’s entire report: “Burns Seen in Hospital Emergency Rooms in 2008 by Burn Type and Victim’s Age(PDF, 121 KB).

Mike Hazell

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