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Fire Deaths Down in Milwaukee

March 20, 2016

In 2010, the number of fire related deaths reached an all-time low. It's a statistic the Milwaukee Fire Department is feeling pretty good about.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett stopped by the downtown fire station to shake hands with his city's firefighters. He says, "The City of Milwaukee Fire Department keeps statistics back for 53 years, and last year we had three fire deaths in the City of Milwaukee."

City officials agree that there are still too many fire deaths, because all three were in homes without working smoke detectors.

Fire Chief Mark Rohlfing says his department installed over a thousand smoke detectors last year. He credits that for the record low, but also the education of kids like Alysia Leach.

After being alerted by her six-year-old sister who saw smoke in the house, Alysia Leach safely evacuated six siblings. The nine-year-old Milwaukee girl says she learned what to do after attending a Milwaukee Fire Training Program.

The Survive Alive House teaches kids how to escape a burning building. Chief Rohlfing believes the Survive Alive House is proving to be a life saving experience, and not just for the kids. He says, "We can tell adults a lot about fire safety, bot sometimes they don't listen to us so well. But they do a really good job of listening to their children."

Chief Rohlfing says the number of house fires in Milwaukee actually went up in 2010. He says education, and a working smoke detector can save lives.

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