Standard Article

Fire Risk, Industrial

Extremes and Environmental Risk

  1. Ian Thomas

Published Online: 15 SEP 2006

DOI: 10.1002/9780470057339.vaf005

Encyclopedia of Environmetrics

Encyclopedia of Environmetrics

How to Cite

Thomas, I. 2006. Fire Risk, Industrial. Encyclopedia of Environmetrics. 2.

Author Information

  1. Victoria University, Australia

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2006


Fire represents both a benefit and a threat to society. Fire is essential and is used constructively in providing many of the materials and services essential to modern living. However, unwanted fires represent a threat that is generally immediately recognized and instils fear into those threatened. Fire generally represents a small but not insignificant risk in modern societies. It represented a greater risk in the past when open fires were common in domestic and industrial situations, but even today unwanted fires are responsible for considerable loss of life, property and services. The consequences of unwanted fires include injuries and death to people and animals involved, loss of contents and building structures and consequential damage to businesses and services. Many of these losses are not recorded, or alternatively, not made publicly available, and so the consequences associated with them are unable to be estimated accurately. However, in many countries considerable effort is expended in recording details of unwanted fires, including locations, causes and consequences. However, international collection of such information is restricted to very basic information such as the overall losses and costs of fires and the number of fire -related fatalities per annum.