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Discovery Data Hub – Civilian Fire Fatality

Using the Civilian Fire Fatality Tracker

Before you start using this dashboard it is important to know where the data comes from and why it does not match what you see on national and state level reporting.  The dashboard is interactive and has two main components: Incident Metrics and Casualty Metrics. The dataset is from the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) incident response data from the years 2014–2019, extracting incidents where civilian fire fatalities occurred.  The difference in reporting results from several factors that include non-reporting entities, unknown status of fire victims at the time of reporting and lack of updates to existing reports by local entities following a fire fatality.  Our goal with this dashboard is to provide a detailed look at incident and casualty metrics from documented incidents on national and state levels which were entered into the NFIRS system.  The dashboard loads on a national level and allows you to select individual states through a drop-down menu at the upper right. Select the state you are interested in and the data fields update to reflect the values from that particular state.

We encourage you to learn more about the dashboard’s functionality by clicking here.

Incident Metrics Dashboard

The value of this dashboard is its ability to show civilian fire fatality incidents based on a variety of important known factors relevant to the event.

There are 5 interactive incident data elements on the Incident Metrics dashboard.  These include Department Type, Year, Hour of the Day, Incident Type and Property Type.  These elements have multiple  levels of functionality, allowing you to select the level of detail you want (such as Department Type or Incident Type) to update the information accordingly.  You can continue to drill down to additional levels to see the changes in the data, such as selecting a single year, or an hour of the day, and your selections will be highlighted.  To shut off a selection within a particular data element, simply click again on the item that you highlighted and that element returns to aggregating all data available.  This feature is especially helpful when you are drilling down into the data using multiple data elements.  To return to the aggregate state, you must remove your selections by clicking once on the item selected in each element.

Department Type – You can click on the department type and all data fields are updated based on the organization type: Career, Volunteer, Mostly Volunteer and Mostly Career.  The difference in the aggregate number of fire fatalities by department type is due to organizations that are not categorized in the National Fire Department Registry.

Year – The data used is from the years 2014-2019, the latest datasets available at the time of development.  When 2020 data is available it will be incorporated into the dashboard.  By clicking on a single Year, you will view the data only from the year selected.  You can turn this off by clicking again on the Year you selected.

Incident Type –  Only the Top 10 Incident Types are listed on this dashboard.  Functionality is not built in to look at items to the far right of the spectrum as their relevance is negligible when compared to the values of the Incident Types listed to the far left.  You can select a single Incident Type by clicking on it to view the data for that selection.

Property Type –  Only the Top 10 Property Types are listed on this dashboard.  Functionality is not built in to look at items to the far right of the spectrum as their relevance is negligible when compared to the values of the Property Types listed to the far left. You can select a single Property Type by clicking on it to view the data for that selection.

90th Percentile Response Time Meter – This meter is calculated from the national dataset and rounded to the minute.  The clock adjusts by selecting a data element from the dashboard.  If you select a Department Type of Career, you will see the clock move to the 90th percentile of incident responses where there was a civilian fire fatality for career departments.  To reset the clock, simply click again on the data element you selected.  Similarly, other data elements work in the same way, if you select an hour of the day the clock will move to the 90th percentile of response times for that hour.

Casualty Metrics Dashboard

On the upper right side of the title bar, you will see a link to Fire Casualty Metrics. This takes you to another dashboard that works similarly to Incident Metrics with multiple interactive data elements that can be selected to concentrate your focus: Affiliation, Year, Primary Apparent Symptom, Specific Location, Activity and Race, as well as any combination thereof.   These elements can reveal a deeper understanding of civilian fire fatalities and provide an opportunity to discuss intervention strategies among stakeholders.   In this dashboard you can drill down the national dataset by state using the drop down in the upper right. Any selections you make will impact the data that you see.  Selections can be turned off by clicking on them a second time, reverting the data to the aggregate for that element.

Should you have questions on the Civilian Fire Fatality Dashboard please contact us at

If you would like to look at another excellent data tool from NFPA comparing fire fatalities among states, click here.