Improper cigarette disposal caused mobile home fire

Michele Anderson, Public Safety Communications Manager

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 at 9:50 a.m.

Fire investigators with the Spokane Fire Department's Special Investigation Unit say Sunday’s mobile home fire was determined to be accidental and was caused by a cigarette disposed of in a plastic container containing potting soil.

Just after 3 a.m., the Spokane Fire Department responded to a reported structure fire in a gated retirement community located in the 2300 block of W. 16 Ave. Firefighters were able to confine the fire to the structure of origin. There were no injuries reported. Damages from the fire resulted in the total loss of the home.

Important smoking safety messages:

  • Smoke outside. Many items in a home can catch on fire if they touch something hot like a cigarette or ashes.
  • Put cigarettes out all the way. Don’t walk away from lit cigarettes and other smoking materials. Put water on the ashes and butts to make sure they are completely extinguished before putting them in the trash.
  • Use a deep, sturdy non-combustible ashtray or container. Place it away from anything that can burn.
  • 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.
  • Before you throw away butts and ashes, make sure they are out, and dousing in water or sand is the best way to do that.
  • Do not smoke after taking medicine that makes you tired.
  • Never smoke around medical oxygen. Medical oxygen can explode if a flame or spark is near. Even if the oxygen is turned off, it can still catch on fire.
  • Never smoke in bed.