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The statistics of fires in shops are studied with a view to assessing fire hazards in shopping malls. It is estimated that, in a 200-shop mall, a fire would be expected most years on average and a large-loss fire every 30 years. The latter figure might be reduced to 5 years if shopping malls behave similarly to department stores. One-quarter of the shop fires originated in cooking appliances, mainly deep-fat frying ranges, and shops using these appliances would merit special attention to fire prevention or protection. Good housekeeping and frequent refuse disposal would also reduce the number of fires. It appears that sprinkler systems reduce the number of fires attended by the fire brigades by a factor of 2 or 3. The probability of failure of sprinkler systems in shops is estimated as 0.065 to 0.09.