NFPA podcast series gives a chilling, yet intimate, look at the lingering effects of American home fires

Family who lost two children to tragedy at the center of five-part story

November 1, 2017—Every day seven people die from American home fires, and another 13,000 are injured each year. These statistics, while important, are only a small piece of America's complex home fire problem.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) answers the question, “What follows a home fire?” in its new podcast series, “The Survivors.” At the center of this five-part story is the van Dijk family. In 2014, a fire at their home killed two of their children. The podcast showcases the lifelong toll fire has taken on this family and others. Interviews with burn treatment and recovery specialists in America, the fire service, and top safety advocates underscore the rarely seen ripple effects of home fires experienced across the nation.

“Through the story of one family, we wanted to give listeners a powerful look at home fires that goes beyond our statistics,” says Fred Durso, a communications manager for NFPA and reporter for “The Survivors.” “The local news constantly covers the flames and devastation from home fires, but when do you hear about the people impacted by fire years after the incident? Through this podcast, listeners will learn what the van Dijk family has endured. Their strength has led them to a new normal, but they are still a family in healing.”

Additionally, the podcast expands beyond the family’s story to discuss the fire challenges inside today’s new homes. Experts also highlight a solution to America’s home fire problem, and a powerful group spending millions of dollars to keep a proven safety feature out of new homes.

Visit to listen to all episodes of the podcast, developed in cooperation with the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors.

About Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors
People who suffer burn injuries often have a challenging time getting back to living. Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors helps them do exactly that. Since 1977, the Phoenix Society has worked with survivors, families, healthcare professionals, firefighters and donors to support burn recovery, improve the quality of burn care, and prevent burn injuries. It is the only national, nonprofit organization helping survivors meet their challenges with the community support and the tools they need to thrive again. Phoenix Society, based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, takes its name from the legendary bird that is consumed by flame but rises again, more vibrant than before. To learn more, visit

About the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
Founded in 1896, NFPA is a global, nonprofit organization devoted to eliminating death, injury, property and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards. The association delivers information and knowledge through more than 300 consensus codes and standards, research, training, education, outreach and advocacy; and by partnering with others who share an interest in furthering the NFPA mission. For more information, visit All NFPA codes and standards can be viewed online for free at

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Contact:Lorraine Carli, Public Affairs Office: +1 617 984-7275