The Fire and Life Safety Professionals ® - Since 1911

Industry

Each year, fire destroys over $9 billion in property value. With the growing awareness of fire and life safety, including the additions of city, state and federal laws, Croker has established itself as the industry's leading service company for fire and emergency preparedness.

  • Over 75% of companies that experience a serious fire go out of business, either directly as a result of the fire or within 3 years of reopening. The damage that a fire can cause to a business cannot be over estimated. The visible signs of a burnt out building and ruined inventory is only half the story. There is also the consequential losses from business interruption, laying off employees and the customers who are forced to turn to alternative suppliers and never return. Insurance may help to soften the blow, but most businesses do not recover.
    Source: Fire Protection Group
  • There are huge indirect costs of fire, including; temporary lodging, lost business, medical expenses, psychological damage, and others. These indirect costs may be as much as 8 to 10 times higher than the direct costs of a fire.
    Source: U.S. Fire Administration / National Fire Data Center
  • Fire kills more Americans than all natural disasters combined. Every year more than 5,000 people die in fires, over 25,000 are injured and direct property loss is estimated at over $9 billion.
    Source: Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
  • High rise fires are more injurious and cause more damage than all structure fires.   69% of high rise structure fires originate on the 4th floor or below. Three-quarters of high rise fires are in residential structures, but these cause only 25% of dollar loss.  High rise fires are inherently more difficult for the fire service.
    Source: National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) / National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS)
  • Fire is Fast: When fire breaks out, it may take just three minutes to go from tiny flame to a raging, all consuming inferno. This is due to “flashover.” Flashover occurs when the air becomes hot enough to ignite every combustible object in a room.
  • Fire is Hot: As frightening as flames are, you may face greater danger from a fire’s intense heat that can sear lungs and fuse clothing to skin.
  • Heat Rises: In a fire, temperatures can vary from 90 degrees Fahrenheit near the floor to a lethal 600 degrees at eye level.
  • Smoke Can Kill: Fire can fill your facility with thick, black, blinding smoke. Smoke contains toxic gases that can kill within minutes. This is especially hazardous to vulnerable residents. Carbon Monoxide poisoning causes 75 percent of all fire deaths. Smoke rises to the ceiling, forming a defense cloud that slowly descends. Beneath it you can still see – and breathe.

 

President Harry S. Truman
May 6, 1947 – President’s Fire Prevention Conference

In 1947, President Harry S. Truman called for, hosted, and participated in the “President’s Fire Prevention Conference of 1947.” The participants in the conference were some of the brightest minds in America at that time. The purpose of the meeting was to identify ways to prevent fires. However, what evolved out of that meeting was the application of a military concept in dealing with safety. That concept was identified as the “3 E’s,” engineering, education, and enforcement and it applied well to fire safety.¹

The purpose of education is ultimately to change behaviors. Fires have for too long been generically categorized as “accidental.” For instance, the cause of a fire is blamed on a misplaced candle or materials placed too close to a furnace. The candle or furnace caused the fire not the person originally behind the action. Responsibility must be correlated between actions and persons with fire.

Nearly all fires can be prevented with the “3 E’s. Education is the most cost effective fire suppression activity the fire service can engage in. By preventing fire from ever starting, costs to municipalities and the overlooked costs to citizens devastated by fire are dramatically reduced.

 

President Richard Nixon
September 7, 1972 

“The Commission on Fire Prevention and Control has made a good beginning, but it cannot do our work for us. Only people can prevent fires. We must become constantly alert to the threat of fires to ourselves, our children, and our homes. Fire is almost always the result of human carelessness. Each one of us must become aware-not for a single time, but for all the year-of what he or she can do to prevent fires.”²

 

  1. Federal Emergency Management Agency/United States Fire Administration/National Fire Academy, Fire Prevention for First Responder and Small Departments (Emmitsburg: United States Fire Administration, 2000).
  2. The Report of the National Commission on Fire Prevention and Control, America Burning (Washington, D.C.: National Commission on Fire Prevention and Control, 1973).
  3. Pictures courtesy of PBS (“Public Broadcasting Service”).

Fire Prevention Week marks the anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire of October 8-9 1871. That blaze, which raged for several days, claimed more than 250 lives and destroyed more than 17,400 structures. Like later major fire tragedies such as the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire in New York (145 fatalities) and the 1942 fire in Boston’s Cocoanut Grove nightclub (491 dead), the 1871 Chicago Fire prompted much-needed reform by focusing attention on fire prevention and fire safety.

In 1911, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Chicago Fire, the Fire Marshals Association of North America proclaimed the nation’s first Fire Prevention Day to promote public awareness of fire safety. Fire-awareness programs and parades were held throughout America.

In 1925, president Calvin Coolidge declared Fire Prevention Week an official national observance. Ever since, the Sunday through Saturday period containing the October 9 anniversary of the Chicago Fire has been the focus of an annual fire-safety-awareness campaign sponsored by the National Fire Protection Association.

Reference: National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)

 

National Preparedness Month marks the anniversary of the tragedies of September 11, 2001. Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, our nation has taken great measures to better prepare for unforeseen emergency situations that may arise at any given time.

Since its inception in 2004, National Preparedness Month presents a month-long nationwide campaign to promote emergency preparedness and focuses on prevention, protection, response and recovery efforts for all hazards, including terrorist attacks and natural disasters.

Throughout the month of September, families, companies and communities are encouraged to be aware as to the importance of being prepared by developing and/or reviewing disaster plans and procedures, scheduling and conducting fire/emergency disaster drills, gathering supplies and staying informed.

 

 


Croker is a long-standing partner with New York City’s Office of Emergency Management’s (OEM) Partners in Preparedness program.  This nationally recognized program supports organizations in preparing their employees, services, and facilities for emergencies.

Fire and Life Safety Related Websites


AMERICAN RED CROSS
www.redcross.org

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
www.dhs.gov

FEDERAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY (FEMA)
www.fema.gov

NATIONAL FIRE PROTECTION ASSOCIATION (NFPA)
www.nfpa.org

NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER
www.nhc.noaa.gov

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
www.nws.noaa.gov

NEW YORK CITY FIRE DEPARTMENT (FDNY)
www.fdny.org or www.nyc.gov/fdny

OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY &
HEALTH ADMINISTRATION (OSHA)
www.osha.gov

Emergency Management Agencies


CONNECTICUT
DEPARTMENT OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
& HOMELAND SECURITY
www.ct.gov/demhs

DELAWARE
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
www.dema.delaware.gov

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
HOMELAND SECURITY AND
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
www.dcema.dc.gov

MARYLAND
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
www.mema.state.md.us

NEW JERSEY
OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
www.state.nj.us/njoem

NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOMELAND SECURITY
AND EMERGENCY SERVICES
www.dhses.ny.gov

NEW YORK CITY
OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
www.nyc.gov/html/oem

PENNSYLVANIA
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
www.pema.state.pa.us

VIRGINIA
OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
www.vaemergency.com

Member / Associations
(Including but not limited to)


BUILDING OWNERS AND MANAGERS ASSOCIATION
www.boma.org

REAL ESTATE BOARD OF NEW YORK (REBNY)
www.rebny.com

Corporate Partners / Strategic Alliances


Note: All logos and images represented on this page are the exclusive property of the corporations, organizations and/or agencies listed.

Consult with Croker today for all your fire safety, emergency / disaster and life safety needs.

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