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The fire engineering approach to designing building fire safety systems requires information on fire occurrences in different types of buildings. In this paper, data collected by the Australian Fire Incident Reporting System (AFIRS) in its first four years of operation is used to determine common and hazardous fire scenarios for a range of building types. It is found that, whereas cooking fires are common in all those building types that contain kitchens or cooking areas, such fires do not spread and cause deaths, but for buildings that contain lounge and sleeping areas, fires involving upholstered furniture cause more deaths, and relatively more damage. In some building types there are insufficient fires to identify the most hazardous scenarios.