Fire related deaths are down so far in the city of Knoxville but reasons for the decline can be difficult to pinpoint.
So far this year firefighters within city limits have responded to one fatal fire in 2013. Nineteen-year-old Mark A Jernigan died earlier this month when fire broke out in the laundry room of the west Knoxville mobile home.
In 2012 there were three fire related deaths and in 2012 there were six, according to KFD Capt. DJ. Corcoran.
Corcoran says it's very difficult to draw connections between lower fatalities and any specific initiative, but he does believe bolstered initiatives instituted in 2008 to educate elementary school children about fire safety are helping.
The "Safety House" program goes beyond the traditional fire truck visit, by introducing children to fire safety inside a mock-home set up to help them visualize and learn what to do in the event of a fire.
"They visit and revisit to make sure the kids are following through with this stuff," says Corcoran.
Sixty two thousand children have gone through the program so far.
Stronger fire codes and smoke detector installations likely contribute to better outcomes as well.
"You can't help but think that what we're doing is helping to educate people and reducing those numbers," said Corcoran.
City residents who need help affording or installing a smoke detector can get help free of charge by calling 595-4672.
Knoxville's decline contrasts sharply with statewide numbers. Of the 10 southeastern states, Tennessee is tied for first place with Georgia with 86 fire-related deaths in 2013.