Fire officials: 90 percent of dorm fires caused by cooking equipment

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Many of you might remember the smell of burnt popcorn on your dorm room floor, hoping that it wouldn’t set off the fire alarm.

According to the fire department, cooking equipment is involved in nine out of 10 reported dorm fires.

The severity of dorm room fires should not be underestimated.

During a demonstration by the fire department, in less than a minute, most of this room has already been consumed by a tremendous amount of fire.

“I didn’t realize that a room could burn up that quickly from just a little candle and I was really surprised to see such a big fire from such a small start,” Seojke Kim, a college student at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Services, said.

“It was pretty crazy to watch that and it was kind of scary honestly,” Josh Cote, college student at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Services, said.

You could feel the intense heat during the demonstration. College students were able to see just how fast a dorm fire can spread onto the whole floor.

“You guys can feel that very easily and you guys were a good distance away in an open ventilated area,” Jeremy Rue, NYS Fire Protection Specialist, said.

As you just saw this dorm room was completely engulfed in flames in just a couple minutes and the fire department explained that a fire can actually double in size in approximately 30 seconds.

“It makes you want to be more careful and yeah just be more careful and definitely not start a fire,” Cote said.

Across the country, fire departments respond to an average of over 4,000 dorm room fires a year causing a yearly average of 35 injuries.

The fire simulation occurred today at the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Services and was conducted by the Albany Fire Department.  Around 100 students attended the demonstration.

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