Milwaukee leaders discuss how to keep fire deaths low

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Milwaukee had only two fire deaths in 2013, so city leaders met on Tuesday to discuss how they can continue to keep fire deaths as low as possible.

Unfortunately, the city has already seen one death this year of a teenager, he was taken off life support on Sunday.

"So we have one fire fatality this year already that in no way diminishes our goal to have that be the only fire death of the year," said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett.

But there are many things you can do to stay safe.

The survive alive house is one program the Milwaukee Fire Department uses to educate children about fire safety.

"We talk about exit drills in the home. If you have a fire how do I get out, what's that strategy to get low and crawl out, to check doors, to call 911," said Milwaukee Fire Chief Mark Rohlfing.

Smoke detectors are also very important.

36% of homes in the U.S. don't have working smoke detectors.

The city passed an ordinance that by October 2017, homes are required to have smoke detectors with lithium sealed batteries with a ten year life guarantee.

"We need at least one on every floor. Ideally, there would be one in every bedroom and one on every floor," said Chief Rohlfing.

It's also critical that you don't use inappropriate means to heat your home like using the stove, and to keep combustible items at least three feet away from temporary heaters.

"Make sure that you're using temporary heat as only temporary heat and being very very careful on what you put next to it so you don't accidentally create a fire," said Commissioner of the Department of Neighborhood Services Art Dahlberg.

The Milwaukee Fire Department also provides and installs smoke detectors to residents who qualify.

For more information CLICK HERE.