It was a milestone year for the Philadelphia Fire Department. According to a new report, there were 24 fire fatalities in Philadelphia in 2013, the lowest number in the city’s recorded history.
Ten Year Fire Fatality Record
Credit: Philadelphia Fire Department
Of the 24 fire-related deaths this year, eleven occurred in ten properties that did not have smoke alarms or had alarms with non-working or missing batteries.
“In keeping with the Fire Department’s goal of Zero Fire Fatalities and full implementation of Community Risk Reduction, smoke alarms continue to be the best method for early warning of fires, and Philadelphia continues to see a trend in the reduction of fire fatalities,” Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers wrote in a written release.
The Fire Department currently uses “Community Risk Reduction” programs under their theme “Freedom From Fire” which debuted in 2008. Through the programs, the department shares information about fire safety and helps residents who are in need of smoke alarms but can’t afford to buy one.
Through “Freedom From Fire,” the Department has installed 7,417 ten year lithium battery-powered smoke alarms into over 4600 homes. Fire officials also provided fire safety presentations for about 900 older adults, performed free home inspections and monitored smoke alarm demands from customers from a 311 call center.
The fire safety program has had considerable support from city officials, including Mayor Michael Nutter. Nutter approved a $31,707 grant to purchase smoke alarms for the deaf and for ten year lithium battery powered smoke alarms to be installed in the homes of those who can’t afford them.
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