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18 Fire Statistics Why Fire Rated Glass Is a Good Idea

18 Fire Statistics Why Fire Rated Glass Is a Good Idea
Fire safety and alert protocols should not only be implemented or practiced during fire safety months. Fire is an all-year-round risk, which is why every business needs to invest in fire rated glass

Employees will be more productive if they feel safe in the workplace. Your company is their livelihood, and protecting it is about more than just safeguarding your assets; it is also about safeguarding the people running your company.

Here are some fire-related facts that will convince you to avoid a business disaster and keep employees and assets safe.

18 Fire Statistics That Will Make You Want to Invest in Fire Rated Glass

Healthcare Facilities Fire by the Numbers:

1. Cooking equipment (66%) was the leading cause of fires in healthcare facilities. However, these fires accounted for only a small portion of the total.

2. Another cause is direct property damage (36%). Most fires are confined and caused by the following factors—electrical distribution and lighting and heating equipment are intentional causes that each accounted for 6%, while smoking and heating equipment accounted for 5%.

3. Playing with a heat source was responsible for 4% of all fires.

Here is a detailed summary of the leading causes of fire in healthcare facilities:

School Fires by the Numbers:

4. In the United States, local fire departments responded to a total of 3,230 fires on school grounds between 2014 to 2018. The fires in these school buildings resulted in an estimated average of one civilian death, 39 civilian injuries, and $37 million in direct property damage per year.

5. School property fires accounted for 1% of all fires in the U.S. and less than 1% of civilian deaths, injuries, and direct property damage.

6. Small fire incidents were identified as the cause of three out of every five school fires.

7. Two out of every five school fires, or 43%, were started on purpose. Fires with an intentional cause were more prevalent in high and middle schools (44%) than in elementary schools (33%).

8. One-third of properties in high school and middle school fires are destroyed. The small number of fires (34%) occurred between 12am and 4am when buildings were unlikely to be occupied.

9. More than two out of every five fires (44%) occur in high and middle schools. One in every five was purposefully set up, while another was caused by experimenting with a heat source.

10. Fires were much more likely in high and middle schools and usually began in a restroom or locker room (32%) than in any other area. Elementary school fires often start with the ignition of trash or cooking materials.

11. Several major factors contribute to the ignition of elementary school fires that had behavioral consequences, such as playing with a heat source (22%), unclassified misapplication of a material or product (8%), abandoned or discarded material or product (7%), and unattended machinery (6%).

12. Electrical failures or malfunctions (17%) and mechanical failures (17%) also played a significant role in fires, implying that there may be gaps in the system of upkeep and repair of school equipment and infrastructure.

Here is a detailed summary of the leading causes of fire in educational institutions:

Business Fires by the Numbers:

13. Every year, over 100,000 business fires occur. While the number of commercial fires has decreased slightly in recent decades, the actual cost of fire-related property damage has risen dramatically. Fires in commercial properties are estimated to cost owners more than 2.4 billion dollars per year.

14. Cooking causes 30.4% of office fires, 50% of hotel and motel fires, and 61% of restaurant fires. A significant portion of commercial property fires begin in the kitchen and are caused by food preparation.

15. Electrical failures are responsible for 18% of warehouse fires. Overloading circuits and daisy-chaining extension cords can wreak havoc on an electrical system and are the leading causes of fires in warehouses.

16. According to the study, 31% of office fires occur between 7PM and 7AM. Overall, this fire occurrence during this time accounts for 67% of property damages.

17. While only 19% of office fires occur on Saturdays and Sundays, they account for 31% of total annual property damage costs.

18. In addition, 52% of the larger fires occurred in a structure that did not have or have non-functioning smoke detectors; 7% of the time, fire sprinklers fail or operate ineffectively. Almost two-thirds of fire sprinkler failures (59%) are caused by someone simply turning off the system. The reasons for this vary: the building may be vacant or under construction, or leaks or other emergency impairments have plagued the system.

Fire rated glass can help businesses avoid worst-case scenarios and keep damages to a minimum in case of a fire, as this does not require any mechanical triggers to operate.



How Fire Rated Glass Can Help 

1. It helps contain fires and prevents them from spreading

Fire rated glass can effectively contain fires, smoke, and in some cases, dangerous radiant heat to a specific area, limiting their spread. The glass is subjected to stringent tests performed by a nationally recognized third-party laboratory.  

2. It doesn’t require a lot of maintenance

Fire rated glass provided built-in or passive protection, making it virtually maintenance-free. It does not require electricity, water, or any complex machinery. 

3. It can be integrated into any design or aesthetic

Fire rated glass provides incredible versatility and variety for those looking to add style and safety to their buildings. Unlike wired glass and tinted ceramics,  today’s USA-made fire rated glass does not have to be unsightly  Today’s advanced fire rated glass provides superior optical clarity free from wires or amber tints.  Low-iron and even decorative options are also available. 

4. It provides safety and security

There are safety advantages to fire rated glass.  Providing vision and transparency in often overlooked areas such as stairwells helps deter crime.  The visual access provided by fire rated glass gives a sense of security to building occupants.   

5. It is soundproof

The acoustic properties of fire rated glass is a significant advantage. Today’s advanced manufacturers of  fire rated glass products have STC and OITC testing to show superior acoustical properties compared to wired glass and ceramics.  They can also be combined with acoustical glass to provide even more sound protection. This makes it ideal for commercial workplaces where professionalism and minimal sound disruption are required.

6. It can withstand heat without the need for wires

Wired glass relied on the embedded wires in the glass in order to hold the glass in place during a fire test.  Today’s advanced fire rated glass products do not rely on any wire mesh, giving them superior optical clarity.  Not only that, but it can meet the most stringent impact safety requirements, which wired glass was unable to pass.  

7. It gives you time to evacuate

Depending on the rating, fire rated glass can provide  20 to 120  minutes of protection,  time, allowing employees and other occupants to evacuate the building safely. Fire rated glass can be cleverly installed in walls, doors, and partitions to carve out clear fire escape routes, exits, and emergency doors for easy evacuation.

8. Its transparency helps you locate the source of fire

Transparent fire rated glass doors, openings, and walls, as opposed to opaque versions that do not provide vision, make it easier to find the source of the fire. The transparency of fire rated glass panels can help those in the building plan a successful escape route and avoid areas where the fire has already spread.  It also gives first responders visual access to the area so they know what to expect.

Key Takeaways on Fire Rated Glass

  • It helps contain fire: As a type of passive fire protection, it is intended to slow the spread of heat and flames by compartmentalizing it with fire rated glass doors, openings, and walls. . This provides evacuees more time to flee the building. In addition, fire resistive glass tested to ASTM E-119/UL 263 is insulative, meaning it can protect against extreme heat, flames, and smoke.
  • It protects people and assets: The ultimate advantage of fire rated glass is that it improves the fire safety of your building, thereby saving lives. You are also protecting your assets inside the building and the structure itself by slowing fire spread and giving the fire department more time.
  • It can be integrated into any home or business: Thanks to its versatility and variety, it can be easily integrated into any structure.
  • It can be fitted and applied anywhere: Fire rated glass can be used anywhere that glass can be installed. 

The Bottom Line

The key to a successful fire safety strategy is ensuring that proper fittings are in place to limit fire spread. To learn how fire rated glazing solutions can protect your business, contact SAFTI FIRST, a leading manufacturer of USA-made fire rated glazing solutions.

Do you have a current or upcoming project that needs fire rated glass and framing? Contact us today!