VIEWPOINT: State’s fire code saves many lives
Minnesotans are safer every day at home, work and school thanks to the Minnesota Fire Code, which turned 40 years old Saturday, Oct. 3.
Before the adoption of a statewide fire code in 1975, the frequency and severity of fires in Minnesota was much higher. The fire-death rate (per 100,000 people) has plummeted 62 percent since the late 1970s. In the same period, there has been a 38 percent decrease in the structure-fire rate (building fires per 10,000 people).
Number of fire deaths by decade:Q. How does Minnesota compare to other states?A. Minnesota’s fire rate is substantially lower than the national rate over the past three years and Minnesota experienced a fire death rate about 20 percent lower than the national rate in 2014.Bruce West serves as the Minnesota state fire marshal.
- 1970s: 961 deaths
- 1980s: 776 deaths
- 1990s: 585 deaths
- 2000s: 465 deaths
- 2010s: 390 (estimate)