Sunday, February 18, 2024

Russians Nearly Three Times More Likely Per Capita to Die in Fires than the Average in Other Countries

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Feb. 13 – Almost 7800 Russians died in house fires in 2022 and 8200 suffered injuries, the last year for which figures are now available and one that is in per capita terms nearly three times greater relative to population than the average of other countries, according to an investigation carried out by the To Be Precise portal.

            During that year, Russia suffered from 353,000 house fires, official data show, the portal says (

            The majority of Russians who die in fires do so not from the flames themselves but from toxic fumes, because their housing units do not have fire alarms, because fire fighters arrive only slowly, up to ten minutes in cities and 20 minutes in rural areas – or even more – and because of simple negligence on the part of Russians (

            The Russian government believes it can reduce the number of fires and fire-related deaths by boosting inspections and regularly announces that it is boosting inspections after major fires. But that approach alone, which fails to address popular attitudes and risky behaviors, accomplishes little, experts say.

            Many fires and fire-related deaths occur because of insecure use of fire, alcohol-impaired behavior, and the view among many Russians that fires are an act of God they can do little about. As a result, few insure their properties and so even when fires do not lead to deaths and injuries, they cast a darker shadow in Russia than elsewhere.

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