Careless smoking

Careless smoking

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Careless smoking is the leading cause of fire deaths. We feel safest at home, but home is where most smoking-related fires, deaths and injuries occur. A dropped cigarette can smolder for hours before bursting into flames.

Prevent fires caused by careless smoking

  • If you smoke, use only fire-safe cigarettes, and always smoke outside. Most deaths result from fires that started in living rooms, family rooms, dens or bedrooms.
  • Never throw cigarette butts from a balcony. Fires on balconies are much more dangerous than those inside the building.
  • Never smoke in bed or when drowsy, intoxicated or medicated.
  • Keep cigarettes, lighters, matches and other smoking materials up high out of the reach of children, in a locked cabinet.
  • Ensure lighters have child-resistant safety features.
  • Teach young children that lighters and matches are not toys, and not to touch them.
  • Never allow anyone to smoke if there is medical oxygen being used.


Put it out

  • Use a deep, sturdy ashtray. Place it away from anything that can burn.
  • Don't let ashtrays become so full that hot ashes might spill over the side.
  • Soak butts and ashes with water before throwing them in the garbage.
  • Do not discard cigarettes in vegetation such as mulch, potted plants or landscaping, peat moss, dried grasses, leaves or other things that could ignite easily.


  • Fires have occurred while e-cigarettes were being used, the battery was being charged or the device was being transported.
  • Battery failures have led to small explosions.
  • Never leave charging e-cigarettes unattended.