BALTIMORE - It was a record setting year for Baltimore City firefighters. In 2012 there were 12 fire-related deaths.
That's the least amount the department has ever seen.
The chief first announced the accomplishment on Twitter Tuesday congratulating his department on a job well done. But there wasn't much time to dwell on their accomplishments.
Firefighters spent part of New Year's Day putting out a house fire on Chatford Avenue near Moravia Road in Northeast Baltimore.
Following the presentation of a historic replica fire truck at fire headquarters Wednesday, Clack took some time to answer questions and reflect on the accomplishment.
"We're proud to announce here in Baltimore City we have the lowest fire death total in history," Chief James Clack said.
It would have been even lower, closer to the department's goal of zero fire fatalities, had there not been the October fire on Denwood Avenue that claimed the lives of four children and one adult.
"I take personally ever time we lose a person in a fire," Clack said Wednesday.
As his department moves forward, he says the approach to minimize deaths continues to be to stress the importance of working smoke alarms. Within two hours of dialing 311, Clack said you can have firefighters at your home installing free smoke alarms.