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Despite Leap In Fire Deaths, Philadelphia Still Trailing 2011’s Fatality Rate

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Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — After burying two firefighters this past weekend (see related story), Philadelphia witnessed six residents die in three fires, including today’s early-morning blaze that claimed four lives (see related story).

Still, the number of fire deaths so far this year is actually less than at the same point last year.

The early morning blaze on Chancellor Street in West Philadelphia brought the number of fire deaths over the weekend to six, and marked a huge jump in the 2012 fire fatality total.

“The total fire deaths that we have for this year are 14,” notes Philadelphia Fire Department executive chief Richard Davison.

That’s actually two fewer than the 16 fire deaths in Philadelphia at this same point last year.

“Just keep in mind that we were at eight prior to (this) weekend, and unfortunately we accumulated six fire deaths over the weekend,” Davison adds.

And the horrible weekend comes on the heels of funerals for two firefighters (another related story):

“It is an unfortunate situation for the fire department to be in,” Davison said today.

Lack of smoke detectors appear to have contributed to the horrible weekend total, and Chief Davison says there’s only one message:

“Smoke alarms in every home, on every level, in every room if possible.”

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