USFA releases report on university fires

August 10, 2011

Emmitsburg, MD – An estimated 3,800 fires occur annually in university housing, according to a report (.pdf file) released Aug. 9 by the U.S. Fire Administration. These fires result in an annual average of 25 injuries and $9 million in property damage.

One-third of all university housing fires occur between September and November, with the peak number occurring in September. Cooking fires that are confined to a container account for 81 percent of these fires.

Among non-confined fires, the leading causes were intentional acts (16 percent), careless action (12 percent), open flame (11 percent) and other heat (10 percent). Smoke alarms were present in 85 percent of non-confined fire cases.  

The report was based on data collected between 2007 and 2009.