It’s a scary thought that your home and possessions could be turned to ash in a few short minutes, but sadly it happens to hundreds of Victorians every year.

The Country Fire Authority have just released their 2017 statistics for preventable house fires, and while the trend thankfully continues downwards, the results highlight a number of things home and property owners can do to help improve their fire safety.

Not surprisingly, the top cause of home fires is cooking, with 438 fires in 2017 starting in the kitchen, followed by electrical (403) and heating fires (266).

However, when it comes to property loss, electrical fires take the lead, with an estimated $9.8 million of damage in 2017 in Victoria alone.

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In addition, the newer built suburbs of Melbourne – those experiencing high population growth – such as Caroline Springs and Narre Warren, had the highest costs of all damage.

In total, for 2017 over $42 million of property loss happened across the state, and, sadly, 5 people lost their lives as a result of a residential fire.

The message from the CFA on how to make your home more fire safe is loud and clear: working smoke alarms save lives.

In particular, they’re asking all Victorians to check their smoke alarm batteries (if they’re not hardwired into the mains power) and if a smoke alarm is over 10 years old, to have the entire unit upgraded to a more effective one.

The full report and comments from the CFA’s Acting Chief Officer Garry Cook can be found on their website and if you want to know more about keeping your home fire safe or about fire protection in general, you can contact them directly or message us through our website or social media channels.