Waupaca Area Fire District

Put a freeze on winter fires!

Fast facts about fire

Heating, holiday decorations, winter storms and candles all contribute to an increased risk of fire during the winter months.

  • Heating equipment fires accounted for 16% of all reported home fires in 2009-2013 (second behind cooking) and 19% of home fire deaths (second behind smoking materials).
  • Space heaters are the type of heating equipment most often involved in home heating fires, figuring in two of every five of these fires and accounting for 84% of associated civilian deaths, 75% of civilian injuries, and 52% of direct property damage.
  • The leading factor contributing to ignition for home heating fire deaths (56%) was heating equipment too close to things that can burn, such as upholstered furniture, clothing, mattress, or bedding.
  • The leading factor contributing to home heating fires (30%) was failure to clean, principally from solid-fueled heating equipment, primarily chimneys.
Escape planning
  • According to an NFPA survey, only one-third of Americans have both developed and practiced a home fire escape plan.
  • Almost three-quarters of Americans do have an escape plan; however, less than half  ever practiced it.
  • One-third of survey respondents who made an estimate thought they would have at least 6 minutes before a fire in their home would become life threatening. The time available is often less. Only 8% said their first thought on hearing a smoke alarm would be to get out!
Smoke alarms
  • Three out of five home fire deaths in 2010-2014 were caused by fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.
  • Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in reported home fires in half.
  • In fires considered large enough to activate the smoke alarm, hardwired alarms operated 94% of the time, while battery powered alarms operated 80% of the time.
  • When smoke alarms fail to operate, it is usually because batteries are missing, disconnected, or dead.
  • An ionization smoke alarm is generally more responsive to flaming fires and a photoelectric smoke alarm is generally more responsive to smoldering fires. For the best protection, or where extra time is needed to awaken or assist others, both types of alarms, or combination ionization and photoelectric alarms are recommended.

If you have comments or would like information,

Waupaca Area Fire District
P.O. Box 46 Waupaca, WI 54981
(715) 258-4434 FAX: (715) 258-4409

Jerry Deuman, Fire Chief

Comments or questions regarding our website: waupacafire@cityofwaupaca.org