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School InspectionThe Prevention Division works to reduce the potential impact of fire and explosion hazards where people live, work, and congregate. This team focuses on inspecting facilities which pose distinct fire hazards and where the potential loss of life from fire is very high.

The division is also responsible for the promotion of fire safety and the education of building owners, operators, and occupants, and the general public. Both office and field personnel are active educators, presenting a variety of program topics across the state of Kansas.

Our office even employs a dedicated Education Consultant to work with local fire and law enforcement jurisdictions, helping to educate kids on fire safety and prevent them from starting fires.

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USFA Data Snapshot: Hospital Fires

USFA | Nov 16, 2016
For each year from 2012 to 2014, an estimated 5,700 medical facility fires were reported to fire departments in the United States. Nearly a fifth of those (1,100 fires) were in hospitals. It is estimated that these fires caused fewer than five deaths, 25 injuries and $5 million in property loss per year. 


Loss measures for hospitals and all other medical facility fires (three-year average, 2012-2014)

The average number of fatalities per 1,000 hospital fires was lower than the same measure for all other medical facility fires. In addition, the number of injuries was also lower than that of other medical facilities. 2

Loss measure Hospital fires All other medical facility fires
Fatalities/1,000 fires
0.4 0.6
Injuries/1,000 fires
17.3 19.6
Dollar loss/fire
$6,030 $11,290

Hospital fires by incident type (2012-2014)

The majority of hospital fires were fires that were confined to cooking pots (60 percent). Confined fires are smaller fires that rarely result in death, serious injury or large content losses. 3 Fires in trash bins, incinerators or compactors composed 10 percent of hospital fires, while 3 percent were fuel burner or chimney fires.

Nonconfined fires, generally larger structure fires, made up 27 percent of hospital fires. Source: NFIRS 5.0.

Hospital fires by time of alarm (2012-2014)

Hospital fires occurred most frequently from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., accounting for 60 percent of the fires. The fires peaked between the hour of noon and 1 p.m. This period of high fire incidence coincides with lunchtime meal preparations, as cooking is the leading cause of hospital fires. Source: NFIRS 5.0.

Causes of hospital fires (2012-2014)

The leading causes of all hospital fires were:

  • Cooking (68 percent)
  • Electrical malfunction (6 percent)
  • Heating (5 percent)

Source: NFIRS 5.0.

While cooking was the leading reported cause of hospital fires overall, it only accounted for 6 percent of all nonconfined hospital fires. Nonconfined fires are larger, more serious fires.

The leading causes of nonconfined hospital fires were:

  • Electrical malfunction (22 percent)
  • Appliances (13 percent)
  • Intentional actions (12 percent)
  • Other equipment (11 percent)

Extent of fire spread in hospital fires (2012-2014)

Eighty-four percent of all hospital fires were limited to the object of origin. Only 3 percent extended beyond the room of origin. Source: NFIRS 5.0.

You may view the entire report with graphics at

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