Hertfordshire smokers warned about cigarette fires
PUBLISHED: 13:41 05 April 2016 | UPDATED: 13:41 05 April 2016
Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service has warned about the dangers of cigarette fires after the death of a Potters Bar resident.
Smokers are being warned of the potentially deadly consequences of smoking indoors, as every week someone dies from a fire caused by a cigarette.
After the death of a former Potters Bar charity worker in a cigarette fire, the council has produced a video to show just how easily a lit cigarette can start a fire if not extinguished properly.
Smoking is the biggest cause of death in accidental fires in the home, with a third of all deaths in fatal house fires caused by cigarettes.
When smokers fall asleep with a lit cigarette in their hand, their proximity to the fire significantly lowers their chances of escape.
Roy Wilsher, Director of Community Protection and Chief Fire Officer said: “Every six days, someone in the UK dies from a fire caused by cigarettes or smoking materials.
“Despite a fall in the overall number of fires caused by these products, it’s still the biggest killer in accidental fires in the home across the country.
“Every smoker should wake up to the risks they take every time they light up, and drop the habit of smoking whilst in bed or under the influence of alcohol. The risk of falling asleep before you put it out is just too great.”
Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service reminds smokers to put cigarettes out properly, use a proper, heavy ashtray, and to never leave cigarettes or cigars unattended.
They also advise residents to smoke alarms on every level of the home and test them on the first of every month. People who do not have a working smoke alarm are at least four times more likely to die in an accidental fire at home.
For the full story of the woman who died in Potters Bar, see the Welwyn Hatfield Times - Potters Bar Edition tomorrow.
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