Plenty of firefighters, but where are the fires? As ‘emergency’ changes its meaning, some critics are arguing it’s time to revisit a century-old system
"as a recent Globe story reported, city records show that major fires are becoming vanishingly rare. In 1975, there were 417 of them. Last year, there were 40. That’s a decline of more than 90 percent. A city that was once a tinderbox of wooden houses has become—thanks to better building codes, automatic sprinkler systems, and more careful behavior—a much less vulnerable place.