July – September
According to the Oregon State Fire Marshal’s Data Unit, fire incident data reported by Oregon fire agencies for 2005 through 2009 reveals that 40% of the year’s fires occur during the summer months (July through September). Fire incidence peaks in July at about 69 fires per day.
- More fires are reported on July 4th than any other day of the year, due to fireworks use. Outside fires account for 65% of summer fires, as compared to only 24% of winter fires.
- Human behavior accounts for a large portion of the increase in outside fires when the weather is warm and dry and people begin spending more time outdoors. Cigarettes start 1 out of 3 outside fires during the summer months.
- Juvenile-set fires also peak in the summertime, when children are out of school.
October – March
Fire incidence are at the lowest during the fall and winter months (October through March) at 25 fires per day.
- Structure fires increase in the colder months. Structure fires account for 50% of Oregon fires during the fall and winter months, compared to only 25% of fires during the spring and summer.
- Heating, cooking, and cigarettes are common causes of structure fires during the fall and winter. Seasonality of fires is largely due to common behaviors and causes repeated each year. By understanding seasonality in your jurisdiction, you can reduce fires by targeting the right prevention efforts to the right time of year.
April – June
Within the United States, spring is the season with the highest daily average of fires. However, cooler climate and high precipitation in Oregon’s largest metropolitan areas correlate to low rates of outside fires during spring.
Questions about the above data? Contact the Oregon State Fire Marshal's Data Unit at (503) 373-1540, extensions 234, 237, or 244.
Portland Fire & Rescue We Respond: Always Ready, Always There
August 4, 2010