The number of people who died in fires in New York City dropped by 25 percent in 2019 — with 66 people killed by blazes compared to 88 in 2018, FDNY officials announced Wednesday.
“Thanks to the brave work of every FDNY member … fewer New Yorkers lost their lives in fires in 2019,” said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro, who called the drop an “outstanding achievement.”
The 88 fire fatalities in 2018 was the highest number in one year in more than a decade. The last time more people died in fires was in 2007, when 95 lives were lost.
In 2016 the fire death toll was 48, the lowest in 100 years. The deadliest year in the Big Apple for fire fatalities was 1970 when 310 people were killed.
The city saw 15 electrical fires, the leading cause in 2019, followed by cooking, which caused 13 fires, and smoking, which sparked eight.
The remaining causes included candles, incendiary devices, car fires, open flames, ignitable liquid/gas, self-immolation, hot objects, incense and unknown, according to the FDNY.
While fatal fires were on the decline, the FDNY responded to a record number of medical emergencies in 2019 with 1,531,870, according to officials. They responded to 1,529,569 in 2018.
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