FIRE safety experts have urged smokers to ‘stub it out’ as part of Dorset Fire and Rescue Service’s (DFRS) Fire Kills campaign.
DFRS is reminding smokers to ‘Put it Out, Right Out’ while highlighting figures showing a third of all fire deaths in the home are caused by cigarettes.
County fire prevention man-ager Kate Huelin said: “Every six days someone dies from a fire caused by cigarettes or smoking materials.
“Despite a fall in the overall numbers of fires caused by these products, it is 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, right out’ is just too great.”
Susan Mary Allen, aged 54, died following a Swanage house fire in November 2008.
At the subsequent inquest into her death the coroner heard evidence that the fire was “almost certainly started by discarded smoking materials”.
Earlier this year a report compiled by the South West Fire Investigation Group identified smoking as one of seven factors linking most home fire deaths in region.
Kate warned: “Just two to three breaths of toxic smoke can render you unconscious, so invest in a working smoke alarm and test it monthly. It can give you the extra time you need to escape if the worst should happen.”
Visit dorsetfire.gov.uk to view simple steps to prevent a cigarette fire in the home.