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Assessing the number of fire fatalities in a defined population
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Centre for Public Safety. (Riskhantering)
Karlstad University, Faculty of Health, Science and Technology (starting 2013), Centre for Public Safety.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0293-1795
2015 (English)In: Journal of Safety Research, ISSN 0022-4375, E-ISSN 1879-1247, Vol. 55, 99-103 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Fire-related fatalities and injuries have become a growing governmental concern in Sweden, and a national vision zero strategy has been adopted stating that nobody should get killed or seriously injured from fires. There is considerable uncertainty, however, regarding the numbers of both deaths and injuries due to fires. Different national sources present different numbers, even on deaths, which obstructs reliable surveillance of the problem over time. We assume the situation is similar in other countries. This study seeks to assess the true number of fire-related deaths in Sweden by combining sources, and to verify the coverage of each individual source. By doing so, we also wish to demonstrate the possibilities of improved surveillance practices. Method: Data from three national sources were collected and matched; a special database on fatal fires held by The Swedish Contingencies Agency (nationally responsible for fire prevention), a database on forensic medical examinations held by the National Board of Forensic Medicine, and the cause of death register held by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare. Results: The results disclose considerable underreporting in the single sources. The national database on fatal fires, serving as the principal source for policymaking on fireprevention matters, underestimates the true situation by 20 %. Its coverage of residential fires appears to be better than other fires. Conclusions: Systematic safety work and informed policy-making presuppose access to correct and reliable numbers. By combining several different sources, as suggested in this study, the national database on fatal fires is now considerably improved and includes regular matching with complementary sources.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 55, 99-103 p.
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
Research subject
Public Health Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-38966DOI: 10.1016/j.jsr.2015.10.001ISI: 000367699600012PubMedID: 26683552OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-38966DiVA: diva2:891379
Funder
Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, 2014-5283
Available from: 2016-01-07 Created: 2016-01-07 Last updated: 2016-03-09Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Dödsfall i Sverige till följd av brand: Omfattning och historiska trender
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Dödsfall i Sverige till följd av brand: Omfattning och historiska trender
2016 (Swedish)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[en]
Fire-related Deaths in Sweden : Determining Current Levels and Historical Trends
Abstract [sv]

Ingen ska omkomma eller skadas svårt till följd av brand. Så lyder den nollvision som Myndigheten för Samhällsskydd och Beredskap har formulerat för brandskyddsområdet. Visionen ingår i en nationell strategi för att stärka brandskyddet för den enskilde och innehåller förutom vision tydliga mål. Ett målstyrt arbete måste vägledas av kunskap om problemets omfattning, orsaker och riskfaktorer. Likaså är det av stor vikt att ha kunskap om den historiska utvecklingen och rådande trend. Syftet med denna licentiatuppsats är att undersöka förekomst och historisk utveckling av brandrelaterade dödsfall Sverige. Data från tre olika nationella register har använts: Dödsbrandsdatabasen, Dödsorsaksregistret, och Registret över rättsmedicinska undersökningar. Vi har härigenom kunnat visa att den rutinmässigt framtagna statistiken från enskilda register systematiskt underskattar den verkliga situationen med 20-25%. Den historiska analysen visar att risken att omkomma genom brand har mer än halverats under de senaste 60 åren i Sverige. Den största minskningen gäller små barn och det är idag mycket ovanligt att små barn omkommer i brand. Risken har inte minskat i samma utsträckning bland äldre och en åldrande befolkning innebär att denna grupp måste prioriteras i framtida brandskyddsarbete.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2016. 42 p.
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 4
Keyword
brand, omkomna, länkade data, mortalitet, historisk trend
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Risk and Environmental Studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-38971 (URN)978-91-7063-681-3 (ISBN)
Presentation
2016-02-12, 1B364, Frödingsalen, 09:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, 2014-5283
Available from: 2016-01-22 Created: 2016-01-07 Last updated: 2016-01-22Bibliographically approved

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