FIRST ON FOX | Second Deadliest year for fire deaths in Baltimore

Fire deaths hit nine-year high in Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WBFF) - FOX45's Joy Lepola went through 13 years of state records and found it's been 10 years since Baltimore City has seen more fire deaths than it has this year - and there's still two weeks left of 2017.

Even before Wednesday morning's devastating fire off Cold Spring Lane, fire deaths in the city had already reached a nine-year high.

City Fire Chief Niles Ford disputed that when asked about it at City Hall.

"I don't know if there's been an increase. I don't think that's factual. I will tell you there is an increase whenever we get around the winter months," he said.

Here is a breakdown of this year's numbers compared to end-of-year totals from years past.

The last time the city saw more people die in fires was in 2007.

2017 - 28

2016 - 16

2015 - 18

2014 - 18

2013 - 21

2012 - 12

2011 - 17

2010 - 20

2009 - 25

2008 - 19

2007 - 33

(Source: Maryland State Fire Marshal)

In a statement late Wednesday, Ford denied that he said there's been no increase.

"Chief Niles Ford is aware and knows there has been an increase in fire deaths this year," the fire department wrote in a statement on Twitter. "He said that there is an increase around winter months."

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