The National Crime Records Bureau Data indicates that a total of 113961 people lost their lives due to Fire Accidents from 2010 to 2014. This is an average of 62 deaths a day. Maharashtra alone accounted for 24293 deaths or 21.3% of all the deaths due to fire accidents.
The temple fire in Kollam that claimed more than 100 lives has renewed focus on fire accidents. The data available with the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) indicates that fire accidents of all types caused more than 1.13 lakh deaths from 2010 to 2014, at a staggering average of 62 deaths per day.
More than 1.2 lakh fire accidents from 2010-2014
The NCRB collates this data in its annual report ‘Accidental Deaths & Suicides in India’. Various un-natural causes of death are listed in this report and cases of fire accidents and related deaths are also captured by the NCRB. Between 2010 and 2014, a total of 1.21 lakh fire accidents of various types took place in the country claiming more than 1.13 lakh lives.
The only silver lining of the data is that both the number of accidents and deaths is steadily coming down in the last few years. From 26025 fire accidents in 2010, the number of accidents has come down to 20377 in 2014, a drop of more than 20%. The number of deaths on the other hand came down from 24414 in 2010 to 19513 in 2014, a 20% drop.
Other Causes are the reason for most accidents
The NCRB categorizes deaths due to fire accidents into four broad groups. Deaths caused by Electric Short Circuit, by Fireworks, by Gas Cylinder/Stove Burst and by any other cause. From 2010 to 2014, the number of deaths due to Electric Short Circuit was about 7743 or 7% of all the deaths. The number of deaths due to firework accidents like the one in Kollam was 1630 or just 1% of the total deaths. 17% or 19491 deaths were caused by burst of Gas Cylinder/Stove. Three fourths (75%) or 85081 deaths were caused by other reasons like fire in buses, trains, buildings etc.
More than 65% of the victims are Women
In each of the five years from 2010 to 2014, the percentage of women victims was more than 60%. For all the five years, the number of women victims was 75039 or 65.8% of all the deaths. The number of male victims on the other hand was 38917 or 34.2% of all the deaths. This percentage of women victims was as high as 66.6% in 2010.
More than half the deaths from Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat & Tamil Nadu
Four states of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu accounted for 54% of all the deaths or 61540 deaths from 2010 to 2014. Most number of deaths took place in Maharashtra (24293) accounting for 21.3% of all the deaths. Madhya Pradesh accounted for 15093 deaths while Gujarat accounted for 11738 deaths. Tamil Nadu was the only other state with more than 10000 deaths.