DCA Division of Fire Safety Releases "Fire in New Jersey 2009" Publication

Report Provides Fire and Emergency Incident Data in New Jersey

TRENTON - The New Jersey Department of Community Affairs' (DCA) Division of Fire Safety today issued "Fire in New Jersey 2009" in recognition of Fire Prevention Month in October. The report, which is an annual publication, provides fire and emergency incident data for the previous calendar year. This year's report can be accessed at http://www.nj.gov/dca/dfs/fire_in_nj09.pdf on the DCA website.

"Timely information is critical to helping fire officials and households make the best decisions about fire prevention. For the last six years, our Division of Fire Safety has done great work in providing the public with pertinent data," said DCA Commissioner Lori Grifa. "We commend the nearly 94 percent of fire departments that gathered and submitted data about fire incidents and strongly encourage those departments that did not participate to do so next year."

Based on incidents received at the Division of Fire Safety, New Jersey fire departments responded 387,731 times to incidents in 2009.  Among the other key findings in the 2009 report:

  • 29,625 fires were reported;

  • 80 percent of all reported structure fires involved residential properties, 59 percent of those being 1 or 2 family dwellings;

  • 77 percent of all civilian fire fatalities occurred in residential properties;

  • 432 civilians were reported injured as a result of fire.

The 2009 statistical analysis of fire and emergency data also reported 71 civilian deaths as a result of fire; this represents, however, a 15 percent reduction in civilian deaths over 2008 data, the lowest number of civilian deaths reported since 2004.

"Fire in New Jersey 2009" is a statistical analysis of fire and emergency incidents in New Jersey, which the Division of Fire Safety is required to collect by law. The data collected and used in the formulation of this report comes from fire departments throughout New Jersey that participate in the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS).

The Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act of 1974 authorized the National Fire Data Center in the United States Fire Administration to gather and analyze information on the frequency, causes, spread and extinguishment of fires.  The data used in the report was provided by fire departments in the state that participate in NFIRS.

"Fire in New Jersey 2009" contains not only the facts about fire incidents in 2009, but vivid color photos of actual fire events and the firefighters who risk their lives to protect New Jersey's citizens and property.

The Division of Fire Safety serves as the central fire service agency in the State. The Division is responsible for the development and enforcement of the State Uniform Fire Code, as well as for implementing public education and firefighter training programs. For more information, log on to http://www.state.nj.us/dca/dfs/ on the DCA website.