Did you know that electrical fires are the leading cause of home fire deaths in the United States?

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), there are an average of 44,880 home structure fires involving electrical failure or malfunction each year. These fires result in approximately 500 deaths, 1,400 injuries, and $1.3 billion in property damage annually.

While most of us think of fires as being started by something like a lit candle or a smoking cigarette, the leading cause of home fire deaths is actually electrical failure or malfunction.

So what can you do to prevent an electrical fire in your home? Follow these five tips from the NFPA:

1. Check your electrical cords and plugs regularly. If you see any signs of wear or damage, replace them immediately.

2. Never overload outlets or extension cords.

3. Be careful when using space heaters and other portable heaters. Keep them away from flammable materials like curtains and furniture, and never leave them unattended.

4. Don’t use electrical appliances in wet areas, such as near sinks or in the bathroom.

5. Have your home’s electrical system inspected by a qualified professional every few years to ensure it is up to code and operating safely.

By following these simple tips, you can help to keep your family safe from electrical fires. However, if a fire does start, be sure to get out of the house immediately and call 911. Don’t try to fight the fire yourself. Leave that to the professionals.