In 1973, a national commission studying the U.S. fire problem created what would become a wake-up call for fire protection in America. The report, “America Burning,” defined in blunt terms and graphic images America’s fire problem as one of the worst in the world’s industrial countries. Any 1970s-era firefighters who read the report could not help but feel proud of their dangerous work.
Published on May 4, 1973, “America Burning” served as a road map for change.
In 1974, Congress passed the Federal Fire Prevention and Control Act. The law created the National Fire Prevention and Control Administration, now the U.S. Fire Administration – and with it the National Fire Academy.
2023 marks 50 years since the seminal report changed the trajectory of fire service priorities for decades.