Kentucky Officials Share Ideas to Fight Rise in Fire Deaths

Apr 17, 2013

Credit Marcus Obal, Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0

Statewide, fire officials have begun discussing ways Kentuckians can stop the rising number of accidental fire deaths, which have claimed 30 people so far this year.

Kentucky Fire Marshal William Swope led the first brainstorming session Tuesday. He says most of the fire deaths have occurred in rural areas.

Much of the two-hour discussion hinged on how to get more working smoke detectors in homes in areas that lack fire personnel who can visit areas door to door. Most rural areas depend on volunteer fire departments that have limited time and resources. 

Swope says Kentucky is at high risk for fatal fires. It has a higher-than-average smoking rate, a high poverty rate and it's a state where supplementary heating sources like space heaters are commonly used.