Several agencies are urging people to take time this week and test their smoke alarms and practice their fire escape plans.
The Red Cross says house fires take seven lives a day in the US.
The office of the state fire marshal reports there have already been 87 fire deaths in North Carolina this year; the majority of those fires happened in homes without a working smoke alarm.
The agency also notes 2018 was the deadliest year on record for fire deaths in North Carolina.
“As cold weather increases the risk of home fires, please prepare your family now during Fire Prevention Week,” said Barry Porter, Regional CEO, American Red Cross Serving Eastern North Carolina. “Install and test smoke alarms on every level of your home, and practice your escape plan until everyone can get out in two minutes or less.”
Fire Prevention Week runs October 6-12.