NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration touted the lowest murder rate in the Big Apple in decades.

“In terms of crime reduction in New York City, 2017 will go down as the safest year we’ve seen in nearly seven decades,” Police Commissioner James O’Neill said.

Murders, shootings, robberies, burglaries and the number of stolen vehicles were all down, but the number of rapes went up slightly.

Mayor de Blasio said what the NYPD has done is nothing short of stunning.

“The last time we had this few murders was 1951. In 1951, the Dodgers were playing at Ebbets Field. If you wanted to go to Ebbets Field on the subway, it cost you a dime to take the subway,” he said.

The mayor said that for years, no one believed there could be fewer than 300 murders in the city. In 2017 there were 290.

Meanwhile, the city’s recent fires have reversed a positive trend, WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported.

Fire deaths in the city increased to 73 in 2017 – up from a record low 48 the year before.

“2016, we had an all-time record for over a hundred years – 48 fire deaths,” FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said Friday. “2017, we were actually on an identical trajectory until we reached December.”

In December alone, there were 26 fire deaths.

Nigro said the FDNY is in the business of saving lives, and when lives are lost, it’s a blow.

During the cold snap, he urged people not to use a stove for heat and to keep space heaters plugged directly into an outlet and at least three feet away from combustibles.

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