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The top causes of house fires

Almost nothing can be more terrifying than the thought of being trapped in a house fire. Unfortunately for many residents of New Jersey and elsewhere, this fear becomes a reality, especially in the winter months. This month, according to U.S. News & World Report, a 72-year-old woman from Edison died in the hospital two days after being rescued from a fire in her home. Authorities said she suffered from smoke inhalation, but they had not yet released a cause for the fire.

It is possible that one of five main causes of house fires resulted in the fire that tragically took this woman’s life. The National Fire Protection Association has listed these factors for the public’s safety and awareness. They include the following:

  • Candles, with New Year’s Day, Christmas and New Year’s Eve being the top three days house fires are started by candles in the United States
  • Cooking, especially with a gas stove or barbeque
  • Electrical fires, particularly those started by faulty or outdated wiring
  • Heating equipment, such as space heaters or fireplaces
  • Smoking, such as when someone falls asleep with a lit cigarette or fails to properly put out a cigarette butt

People may find it especially helpful to learn that December, January and February are the most dangerous months of the year for home fires caused by space heaters and other heating sources. It can save lives when residents are aware of the dangers and take measures to prevent fires. However, in the case of a faulty product or the failure of a property owner to provide functional smoke detectors, others may be held responsible for a fire that causes an injury or death.