US fire administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency Region V administrator and nation’s fire service leaders to travel to Detroit, Chicago and Columbus to urge public to be fire safe and #WinterReady ahead of U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Extreme Cold Summit
Washington D.C – Fire dangers increase during the winter months and claim more lives than during any other time of the year. More than 25 children across the country have already died in home fires since Jan. 1, 2024. The total number of fatalities so far is 142, an average of 8 fire fatalities a day. At this rate, fire deaths are on track to hit 3,000 in 2024, topping the nearly 2,300 deaths that occurred in 2023, which included 232 children, 498 older adults and 85 firefighters.
Deaths caused by fire are only part of the story, as there are thousands of displacements when homes are destroyed, contributing to the homelessness numbers across the nation.
These sobering statistics highlight the need to educate the public on ways to protect themselves, especially during winter months, as cold weather brings additional home fire risks. Unwanted and destructive fires are preventable, and the steps people take to prepare now can save lives.
On Jan. 22, 23 and 24, Dr. Lori Moore-Merrell, the head of the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA), will join the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region 5 Administrator Tom Sivak and leaders of America’s national fire service organizations in Detroit, Chicago and Columbus, Ohio, respectively, to draw public attention to fire safety measures that can be taken to make sure children and older adults are both fire safe and #WinterReady.
This event will take place ahead of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Extreme Cold Summit, which aims to convene voices and resources from across the country to share local community challenges, winter vulnerabilities and real-life actionable steps to combat the impact of extreme cold.
Federal, local and national organization leaders will be available for interviews before and immediately following the press event.