The FDNY announced a “record-breaking, historic achievement” on Monday. The department improved its response time to fires and other life-threatening emergencies and fewer people died in fires last year than in a century.
Mayor Bill de Blasio and Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro announced that 48 people died in fires in 2016, which is the lowest number than in any recorded year since 1916. There was also a decline in serious fires – 9 percent – the largest annual decrease since 2008.
The FDNY responded to fires five seconds faster in 2016 and improved response time to medical calls by shaving off 21 seconds.
“We pushed ourselves to save even more lives in 2016 — embarking on a life-saving citywide smoke alarm program that has reached tens of thousands of homes — and we’ve seen the outstanding results with a historic 100-year low for fire fatalities in our city,” Nigro said.
GetAlarmedNYC, the nation’s largest smoke alarm giveaway and installation program, wrapped up ahead of schedule with more than 113,000 combination smoke/carbon monoxide detectors distributed in 2016 to tens of thousands of New Yorkers. The $4 million project was announced in October 2015 and was expected to take two years to complete.
“Never has our city been as safe from the ravages of fire as we are today, thanks to the heroic work of our firefighters and all FDNY personnel,” de Blasio said. “This record-breaking, historic achievement is the result of true teamwork by our fire and EMS first responders, fire marshals and dispatchers, as well as inspectors and fire safety educators who helped reduce serious fires by 9 percent this year. Together, these hard working FDNY members have made a tremendous impact on our city and ushered in a new era for fire safety for all New Yorkers.”