The City of Titusville, Florida / Fire & Emergency Services / NewsPrevent Smoking FiresIf you smoke, put it out. All the way. Every time.
Home fires started by cigarettes displaced two families in the last two weeks in Titusville. This is tragic, says Fire Chief Michael Woodward of the city’s fire department, because the fires could have easily been prevented. Fires caused by cigarettes, he explains, often start on or next to the victim — in bed, on a sofa or in the trash. He urges smokers in our community to put their cigarettes out, all the way, every time.
Smoking is the number one cause of preventable home fire deaths across the country. If you smoke or live with someone who smokes, learn the facts.
Every year, almost 1,000 smokers and non-smokers are killed in home fires caused by cigarettes and other smoking materials. The U.S. Fire Administration and the Titusville Fire and Emergency Services Department is working to help prevent home fire deaths and injuries caused by smoking materials. Fires caused by cigarettes and other smoking materials are preventable.
IT WON’T HAPPEN TO ME
Every year, smokers are killed in home fires caused by smoking materials like cigarettes, cigars and pipes. A lit cigarette accidentally dropped onto a chair or bed can cause a large fire in seconds.
MY FAMILY COMES FIRST
Home fires caused by smoking materials have killed others living in the same home who were not smoking. If you live with a smoker, learn how you can help prevent fires caused by smoking materials.
IT ONLY TAKES SECONDS
Putting out a cigarette the right way only takes seconds. It is up to you to make sure your cigarette is put out, all the way, every time.
Three minutes ago, a cigarette falls on an upholstered chair. Your life can change in minutes. At the end of those 90 seconds, the entire room is on fire.
Q: I’m a smoker or live with a smoker. What can I do to make sure our home is safe from fires caused by smoking materials?
A: Follow these safety tips:
- The safest place to smoke is outside of the home.
- Use a sturdy ashtray or a can filled with sand to collect ashes.
- Use ashtrays with a wide, stable base that are hard to tip over. If it wobbles, it won’t work.
- Ashtrays should be set on something sturdy and hard to ignite, like a table.
- Put It Out. All the Way. Every Time. The cigarette really needs to be completely stubbed out in the ashtray.
- Soak cigarette butts and ashes in water before throwing them away. NEVER toss hot cigarette butts or ashes in the trash.
- Chairs and sofas catch on fire fast and burn fast. Don’t put ashtrays on them. If people have been smoking in the home, check for cigarettes under cushions.
- NEVER smoke while using oxygen or anywhere near an oxygen source, even if the source is turned off. Oxygen makes any fire burn hotter and faster.
- If you smoke, use reduced ignition strength cigarettes, commonly referred to as “fire-safe cigarettes.”
- If you are drowsy or falling asleep, put it out. Smoking in bed is just plain wrong.
To prevent tragedy from occurring if a fire does start, be ready:
- Place working smoke alarms on the ceiling of every level of your home.
- Get a smoke alarm that can sound fast for both a fire that has flames, and a smoky fire that has fumes without flames. They are called “Dual Sensor Smoke Alarms.”
- Have an escape plan and practice it. Plan two ways to escape from every room. Practice the escape plan at least twice a year.