lunes, abril 15

Yuma Fire Department shares awareness during Fire Prevention Week’s 100th Anniversary

YUMA, Arizona. – October 9th through the 15th is National Fire Prevention Week.

The 2022 theme for Fire Prevention Week is “Fire won’t wait, Plan your escape” reminding us to have and practice a home fire escape plan. To further mark this week, each day we will be highlighting a different aspect of fire prevention.

The first national recognition of a Fire Prevention Day came in 1911 on the 40th anniversary of “The Great Chicago Fire”. That fire occurred October 9, 1871. At least 250 people died, 100,000 were left homeless, more than 17,000 structures and 2000 acres burned in only 27 hours! Popular legend has it that the fire was started by a lantern kicked over by “Mrs. O’Leary’s cow”.

Less known to history is “The Great Peshtigo Fire” (the most devastating forest fire in American history) raging that same week in neighboring Wisconsin. That fire would burn 2,400 square miles (1.2 million acres!), killing more than 1,100 people, completely destroying the town of Peshtigo, Wisconsin and 15 other towns.

That week in October would long be remembered for its tragic losses in life and property. In 1922 the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) began the observance of Fire Prevention Week. In 1925 President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the first National Fire Prevention Week. In the 100 years since NFPA began recognizing this week, our country has grown tremendously and great efforts have been made to protect and preserve life and property, but thousands still die in fires every year in the United States.

According to the NFPA, U.S. fire departments responded to 356,500 home fires in 2020. These fires resulted in roughly 2,580 civilian fire fatalities, and many billions of dollars in damages. On average, 7 people per day die in U.S. home fires.