- Associated Press - Monday, May 23, 2016

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - State public safety officials say 57 people died in fires last year in Minnesota - the highest number of fatalities in 13 years.

The Department of Public Safety’s State Fire Marshal Division released the numbers Monday along with the cause of the fatal fires. Nine deaths are attributed to careless smoking. Unattended cooking was cited in four fatalities. The fire’s cause was undetermined in 24 deaths. The remaining were due to arson or suicide.

The 57 deaths in 2015 represent a nearly 30 percent increase over fire fatalities in both 2014 and 2013.

Sixty-four people died in fires in Minnesota in 2002.

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