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Fire concerns of today's homes


Modern homes pose serious fire concerns

Enter the modern home, a spacious oasis filled with creature comforts. Marvel at the open floor plan. Relax in overstuffed, upholstered furniture. Feel good knowing that the home was made with construction practices friendly to the environment. What you can't see, however, is how these components all play a part in creating home fires that burn faster than ever before.

NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative offers the following resources underscoring these fire concerns. 

Lightweight Construction

Research shows that today's homebuilding materials under fire can impact firefighter safety. Studies point to the fire failure of unprotected, lightweight engineered wood systems routinely used in floors and roofs of new homes.

Upholstered Furniture

New homes often contain modern furnishings made of mainly synthetic materials that, under fire, can create a highly toxic environment, greater fuel load, and faster fire propagation. Home fire sprinklers provide added safety to firefighters, protecting structural stability and maintaining tenability by preventing flashover. This protection allows fire crews to conduct search-and-rescue operations and perform an offensive fire attack. For more information, download NFPA's "White Paper on Upholstered Furniture Flammability."

Free Webinar: Fire Concerns With Today's Homes

While more economical and environmentally friendly, modern homebuilding materials and the synthetic contents filling our homes pose challenges when exposed to fire. NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative hosted a webinar underscoring the modern home environment and why home fire sprinklers play a crucial role in safeguarding residents from death and injury. Login to Xchange, NFPA's online community, or register for free to watch this informative video. 

Free Presentation: The Threats of Unprotected, Lightweight Construction and Modern Furnishings to Firefighters

NFPA has created a popular presentation aimed at educating community decision makers and the public about the fire concerns with modern homes. The presentation, "The Threats of Lightweight Construction and Modern Furnishings to Firefighters," includes recent case studies of fire deaths in new homes, fire statistics, and a section on the growing dangers of today's home furnishings. The presentation also includes news stories underscoring threats to firefighter and homeowner safety and how home fire sprinklers reduce these risks.