Common Causes of Commercial Building Fires
Most office fires are caused by cooking equipment, accounting for slightly over one in every four commercial office fires. However, while these fires are the most common, they do not account for most of the property damage to office buildings. That position is taken by the intentional damage category. Intentional damage alone accounts for a full 20% of commercial fire property damage. Intentional Property Damage occurs when a person seeks to purposely damage the office property through arson.
Two other leading causes of fire in office buildings are heating equipment, electrical distribution, and lighting equipment. Together, they account for 18% of property damage to commercial office buildings. These can include things such as space heaters, light fixtures, electrical wiring, outlets, electrical appliances, extension cords, and more.
While lower on the list, smoking materials, electronic, office, or entertainment equipment account for 12% of commercial office property damage.
Lastly, exposure fires, as defined by the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS), are fires resulting from another fire outside of the commercial building itself. This kind of commercial fire damage accounted for 18% of property loss.