Across the U.S., millions of households are protected every day by home security systems that monitor for burglary, fire and carbon monoxide. Still, they are in the minority. The vast majority of American homeowners do not have security systems installed. Perhaps the prospect of a house fire might change some minds.
House fires are devastating no matter when they occur. Unfortunately, though, the number of house fires increases during the winter months. Between winter heating, holiday decorations, and cooking accidents related to holiday celebrations, there are simply more opportunities for house fires to start during the winter months.
A home security system helps by providing around-the-clock monitoring for fire and carbon monoxide poisoning. We all know how important it is to have working smoke detectors, so does it not make sense that a property owner would enjoy even more protection from a monitored home security system that includes connected smoke detectors? Absolutely.
The Stats Are Alarming
Statistics from the National Fire Protection Agency clearly demonstrate that December through March are peak months for the injuries and deaths they cause. Here are some things related to those statistics that every homeowner should be aware of:
- Careless smoking is the leading cause of fire-related deaths in the U.S., but the number of fires caused by home heating during the winter is equal to the number of careless smoking fires during that same period. These fires cause relatively the same number of deaths, as well.
- Home heating equipment is the leading cause of fires during the winter months. Roughly two-thirds of fire-related deaths during the winter months are the result of home heating
- The careless use of candles is a growing problem and another leading cause of house fires. Unfortunately, candle use tends to increase with the winter season due to the holidays. Homeowners must be extremely cautious with candles.
- Cooking fires also increase during the holiday season. From deep frying turkeys indoors to leaving the stove unattended, fires that start in the kitchen can be devastating. And with the busy holiday season, there are more opportunities for fires because people are cooking more frequently.
There are several takeaways from the statistics, beginning with the reality that property owners need to be extra diligent during the winter season. Avoiding a house fire is a matter of preventing the kinds of careless behaviors that lead to fires. More importantly, homeowners should take every precaution to keep themselves and their families safe, including having working smoke detectors – at the very least. A monitored security system would be even better.
How Monitored Security Works
A monitored security system is connected to a central alarm station through either cellular signals or a telephone landline. In the event of a house fire, the system does two things. First, it sounds an audible alarm to alert occupants to get out of the house right away. Second, it sends an alarm to the central monitoring station. Personnel at the monitoring station then assess the situation and contact local first responders.
Smoke detectors do a great job of alerting occupants of a potential fire by making noise. A monitored security system goes one step further by getting dispatchers and fire officials into play a lot more quickly. This is crucial. The faster first responders can get to a house fire, the greater the chances of reducing damage and protecting life.
Now that winter is here, we all need to start thinking about avoiding house fires. A monitored security system is a step in the right direction.