At 30 seconds, smoke detectors sense the fire and activate.
Fire ignition has occurred. Every 74 seconds, a house burns in the U.S. Within one minute of the fire, the smoke alarm sounds. You awaken. You don’t smell smoke but you get up to check.
Fire spreads from first flame and smoke beings to fill the room.
It takes almost 30 seconds to reach the stairs and start down. As you descend, you start to smell smoke. You see smoke billowing out of the living room. In the living room, the curtains are in flames. You start back up the stairs yelling to warn your family.
The temperatures in the room exceed 200 degrees Fahrenheit (°F).
Structural integrity of the room is compromised. Objects fall from the ceiling.
Fire is growing. By the time you reach the top of the stairs, you are blinded by smoke. Fire is not bright. It is hidden by thick, black smoke.
Smoke pours into the other rooms. Blackout conditions are imminent.
Building materials and furnishings give off poisonous gases as they burn. Most people who die in fires don’t die from burns. Smoke and toxic fumes are almost always the killer. In the blackness, you collide with your spouse to save the children.
Escape becomes more difficult and loss of life should be expected.
Temperatures in the home continue to rise. The fire conditions in the home make it nearly impossible to continue.
Flashover occurs. Everything in the room ignites. Temperatures are over 1200 degrees.
Everyone should be out of the house by this time. More than 4,000 Americans die in fires every year.
Fire department arrives at your home. (National average)
During the chaos, the neighbors may have called the fire department. Firefighters are scrambling to the emergency. The fire truck is rolling to your home. Upon arrival at your home, the firefighters are evaluating the fire, searching for a water source and preparing to enter your home. The national average response time is 6 minutes from receiving the call.
Minutes Matter Timeline
0:30At 30 seconds, smoke detectors sense the fire and activate.
1:10Fire spreads from first flame and smoke begins to fill the room.
1:35Temperatures exceed 200 degrees Fahrenheit (°F).
2:45Structural integrity of the room is compromised. Objects fall from the ceiling.
2:56Smoke pours into the other rooms. Blackout conditions are imminent.
3:00Escape becomes more difficult and loss of life should be expected.
4:10Flashover occurs. Everything in the room ignites. Temperatures are over 1200 degrees.
6:00Fire department arrives at your home. (National average)
Fire Sprinklers Save Lives
Property and lives can be lost in a fire in no time. Take this video for example - It doesn't take long for this devastating fire to spread throughout the room, destroying everything in its path.
This sequence of events changes dramatically when a home is equipped with residential fire sprinklers. Fire sprinklers typically activate within the first couple of minutes before the temperatures get above 200 degrees.