The State Fire Marshal's Office recently announced that no children died in fires last year in the entire state of Massachusetts. reports that Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey said the promising headline was a first for Massachusetts, according to records researched the agency provided Friday.

The statistic is even more impressive when you consider the fact that children and seniors are typically at more risk of dying in fires than any other household member.

“To have no children, no one under the age of 18, die in a fire in Massachusetts is an amazing accomplishment,”

MA Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey


The Fire Marshal believes the Student Awareness of Fire Education Program, known as S.A.F.E. deserves much of the credit for teaching fire safety to children in schools. The S.A.F.E. program provides grants to local fire departments to teach fire and life safety to children in schools. The program teaches students to recognize the dangers of fire and the fire hazards of tobacco products through 23 key fire safety behaviors taught in developmentally appropriate ways. According to the state's website, since the S.A.F.E. program began in 1996, child fire deaths have dropped significantly in Massachusetts.

Adults are responsible for home fire safety, but the program has brought key safety information on maintaining smoke alarms, practicing home fire drills, cooking, heating, candle and match and lighter safety home to those adults. Goodness knows there’s nothing like being nagged by a third-grader to test your smoke alarm.

MA Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey

In all, 39 people died in fires in Massachusetts in 2020 which down from 42 the previous year according to the State Fire Marshal's Office.

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