Not too long ago we provided some tips on how to prevent smoking-related fires in your home after a Westfield, MA woman died in a fire caused by cigarette smoking near a home oxygen system. Even more recently, an off-duty police officer helped rescue an elderly woman from a blaze in Arlington, Massachusetts that was ignited when someone improperly extinguished a cigarette in a planter filled with mulch on the second-floor deck of a two-story home.
The woman — who was on oxygen — lived on the first floor and after firefighters knocked down the fire, they removed at least five oxygen canisters in danger of exploding. The Arlington woman was very lucky. Every year nearly 1,000 people die in home fires started by cigarettes, according to the U.S. Fire Administration — and one in four of the people killed in those types of home fires was not the smoker whose cigarettes caused the blaze.
As we’ve mentioned in the past, it’s important not to throw a warm or still-lit cigarette butt in the trash, on the grass, or, as in the case in Arlington, in a planter filled with mulch. It’s also important not to smoke in bed as you could doze off and set it and yourself on fire.
The best thing you can do is quit, but if that’s not an option, then smoke outside, not in the house. However, be sure to extinguish your cigarette and dispose of it properly. Don’t just smoke it and toss the butt on the grass or dried leaves because it could smolder and start a fire.
When it comes to protecting your family and your home from fire, every second counts — that’s why it’s critical that you install a home fire alarm system with central station monitoring.
Think about it: what happens if a fire erupts when no one’s home? Stand-alone smoke detectors can only work if you’re home to hear them. If a fire breaks out out in the early morning hours and burns unchecked for a few minutes while you’re asleep, the smoke and carbon monoxide gas can cause severe injury or can stop you and your family from escaping and calling for help.
American Alarm fire alarm systems use the best available technology with hard-wired smoke, heat and carbon monoxide detectors that are monitored by our 24-Hour Security Command Center. At the first sign of smoke, heat or carbon monoxide, an alarm is sent to our central monitoring station where we have security staff on hand 24-7, 365 days a year.
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