Number of Fire Fatalities Up - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Number of Fire Fatalities Up

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WASHINGTON--  The number of fire related fatalities in 2009 is up 157% in Washington from the same time period last year.  That's 18 deaths. 

In the Tri-Cities, we haven't seen any fire fatalities this year.  Washington state patrol, as well as local fire fighters, are using these scary statistics to promote fire safety.

They stress the importance of developing a fire escape, and always paying attention when you cook.  These are things one local fire fighters says should be common knowledge, but are often times over-looked.  They can save your life.

"Keeping your smoke detectors with good batteries in them, your house clean and well maintained, and not having unattended heat sources are probably the three most important things you can do to prevent fires in your home," says Kennewick firefighter Ryan Gladstone.

Gladstone also stresses never smoke in bed.  He says too often people fall asleep with a lit cigarette.  

Of the 18 reported deaths this year, three were a result of drug manufacturing, something we saw recently in Walla Walla.