Holiday Home Hazards Poll Reveals New York Sees Significant Surge in Fire Related Claims During the Holiday Season

Posted by  //  December 7, 2015  //  Allstate, Articles

Allstate data shows distinct spike in Americans’ property claims during holidays, yet between shopping, decorating, cooking and traveling, risky behavior abounds

Nearly half of Americans (46 percent) will spend money on decorations this holiday season, with 21 percent of those individuals expecting to spend more money than last year. Many people, however, admit safety is not always top of mind when it comes to decking their halls.

The third annual Allstate Holiday Home Hazards poll revealed risky behaviors, such as leaving packages in the open, leaving doors unlocked, or falling asleep with the stove on, a candle lit or a fire still roaring. The poll also found many do not heed safety warnings while decorating the home – the dangers of which can be explored in a fun and safe way with Allstate’s interactive online Holiday Decorator experience.

Chestnuts, Open Fires and Dangerous Décor

  • More than half (53 percent) of adults admit they have plugged too many lights into one outlet.

  • Four-in-10 (40 percent) say they have slipped or fallen in a holiday-related activity, such as decorating.

  • Twenty-nine percent have left a real Christmas tree without water for more than three days, increasing the risk of fire.

  • More than a quarter of people (28 percent) have left the house and/or fallen asleep with candles burning. And about a quarter (24 percent) said they have done the same with a fire burning in the fireplace.

  • Of the people who own a fireplace, just over a quarter (28 percent of wood-fireplace owners and 26 percent of gas-fireplace owners) have cleaned or inspected their fireplaces in the past year.

There’s a distinct trend with decoration-related holiday home hazards: fire. Some of the most prevalent hazards, according to Allstate’s claims data:

Insurance

Policy Type

Most Costly Claim i

Median Cost of Claim i

Increase During Holidays ii

 

Fire Originated From Fireplace

 

Homeowners

$1,596,013

$10,324

196%

Condo

$154,761

$13,222

Renters

$34,798

$13,847

 

Burning Candles Caused Fire

 

Homeowners

$349,536

$14,038

63%

Condo

$70,665

$4,241

Renters

$38,511

$2,447

 

Electrical Fire

 

Homeowners

$1,059,926

$24,462

21%

Condo

$138,225

$6,304

Renters

$98,127

$15,010

 

Smoke From Fireplace

 

Homeowners

$93,772

$11,262

191%

Condo

$19,197

$3,939

Renters

$32,782

$4,564

 

Using Allstate’s Holiday Decorator to virtually hang your lights, garland and mistletoe is an interactive way to learn about keeping your home safe this season. Additionally, Allstate recommends a few easy ways for New Yorkers to keep your holidays on track:

  • Have your chimney inspected and cleaned annually before the holidays begin to ensure it’s safe for use.

  • Never leave burning candles or fireplaces unattended, and keep trees or other flammable items away from fire.

  • Check holiday lights, throwing away any that are broken, and don’t overload the outlets. Only lights and extension cords specified for outdoor use should be used outside.

Survey Methodology

The survey of 1,001 American adults age 18+ was conducted Oct. 12 to Oct. 15, 2015 via an online survey using a sample reflective of the American population. The survey was conducted by FTI Consulting, Inc. (FTI) for Allstate.

The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer, protecting approximately 16 million households from life’s uncertainties through auto, home, life and other insurance offered through its Allstate, Esurance, Encompass and Answer Financial brand names. Allstate is widely known through the slogan “You’re In Good Hands With Allstate®.” The Allstate brand’s network of small businesses offers auto, home, life and retirement products and services to customers in the United States and Canada. In the 20 years since Allstate became a fully independent public company, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate, its employees and agency owners have donated more than $405 million to support local communities.

i Costs are the amount Allstate paid on the reported claims. Based on Allstate claims data during the holiday season versus non-holiday season over a three-year period, Nov. 15 to Jan. 15, 2012-2015.

ii Percentage increase in claims during the holiday season versus non-holiday season over a three-year period, Nov. 15 through Jan. 15, 2012-2015.

 

For More information and a new quote please call Shirley Eizember, Pinckney Insurance Agency, 41 Port Watson St, Cortland New York. 607-756-8505

The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation’s largest publicly held personal lines insurer, protecting approximately 16 million households from life’s uncertainties through auto, home, life and other insurance offered through its Allstate, Esurance, Encompass and Answer Financial brand names. Allstate is widely known through the slogan “You’re In Good Hands With Allstate®.” The Allstate brand’s network of small businesses offers auto, home, life and retirement products and services to customers in the United States and Canada. In 2014, The Allstate Foundation, Allstate, its employees and agency owners gave $34 million to support local communities. Allstate employees and agency owners donated 200,000 hours of service across the country.

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