Report shows fire deaths in state have dropped

Published 8:57 am Wednesday, October 23, 2013

ST. PAUL — A report from the state Fire Marshal Division shows the number of fatalities caused by fire has decreased over the past 40 years.

State Fire Marshal Jerry Rosendahl said officials are proud of the progress Minnesota has made.

According to the report announced this week, Minnesota has the 10th-lowest rate of fire deaths per capita in the United States — at .93 deaths per 100,000 people.

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State officials say devices such as smoke alarms and sprinkler systems have helped lower the number of deaths. Inspection and code enforcement programs targeting hotels, schools and other facilities have also helped.

The report said a total of 50 people died in Minnesota fires in 2012, compared with 56 a year earlier. Cooking continues to be the No. 1 cause of structure fires.