Improperly discarded smoking materials is one of the leading cause of fire in Fairfax County. So far in 2019, there have been seven fires caused by improperly discarded smoking materials! Monetary damages for the seven fires was approximately $231,425!
All seven fires were totally preventable! In two of the fires, the presence of fire sprinklers undoubtedly saved lives and property. Another fire necessitated the rescue of an eleven-year-old child by firefighters which averted tragedy.
If you smoke, please take a moment to learn how to prevent starting a fire. Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department urges all residents who smoke to “Sink It or Soak It!” and prevent careless fires!
- Never dispose of cigarette butts in potted planting soil. The soil, when it gets too dry, can become highly flammable.
- Never flick cigarettes into mulch or shrubbery. Dispose of them in a suitable ashtray or bucket with sand. Ensure designated outside smoking areas have an appropriate fireproof container, ashtray or bucket.
- Completely douse butts and ashes with water before throwing them away, as they can smolder and cause a fire.
- Never smoke in bed.
- Provide large, deep ashtrays with a center support for smokers. Check furniture for any dropped ashes before going to bed. Empty ashes into a fireproof container with water and sand.
- Keep smoking materials away from anything that can burn (i.e., mattresses, bedding, upholstered furniture, draperies, etc.).
- Never smoke in a home where oxygen is being used.
- If you smoke, choose fire-safe cigarettes. They are less likely to cause fires.
- To prevent a deadly cigarette fire, you must be alert. You won’t be if you are sleepy, have been drinking, or have taken medicine or other drugs.
- Keep matches and lighters up high, out of children’s sight and reach.
Learn more about some of the recent fires:
Improper Disposal of Smoking Materials Causes Dunn Loring House Fire
Improperly Discarded Smoking Materials Cause Annandale Nursing Home Fire
Improperly Discarded Cigarettes Cause Rose Hill House Fire
Improperly Discarded Smoking Materials Cause Springfield House Fire
The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is asking for the public’s help identifying a person of interest in a fire that occurred on Monday, November 5. At 11:05am, Fairfax County Fire and Rescue units responded for reports of a building fire in the 6000 block of Richmond Highway in the Belle Haven section of Fairfax County. The fire is under investigation.
The person of interest is described as a male, 5’8” to 5’10”, 220 to 225 pounds. Fire investigators would like to speak with him regarding their investigation.
Anyone who can provide information for the person of interest is asked to call Captain Tim Palmer, Lead Investigator, at 703-246-4707.
Belle Haven Hotel Fire Currently Under Investigation
As you will see in the video below, from our partners in safety at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, it is very important to keep a live Christmas tree watered.
The video clearly demonstrates what happens when fire touches a dry tree versus a well-watered, properly maintained tree. Please share this with your friends and social media networks.
On Thursday, November 22, at approximately 3:38 a.m., units responded to a reported house fire in the 600 block of Stuart Court in the Town of Herndon.
Units arrived on scene of a two-story, single-family home with no visible sign of smoke or fire. Crews quickly located a fire in the attic space above the garage. Firefighters worked aggressively to extinguish the fire. No civilian or firefighter injuries were reported.
A total of four occupants and two visitors were present at the time of the fire. One of the occupants awoke to flickering lights and an odor of smoke. The occupant alerted the others and called 9-1-1. The six occupants self-evacuated prior to fire department arrival. Working smoke alarms were installed but did not activate due to location of the fire.
Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started in the attic space over the garage. The cause of the fire was a malfunctioning box fan located in the attic.
Four residents of the home were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and accepted. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $75,000.
On Thursday, November 15 at approximately 8:22 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the City of Alexandria Fire Department were dispatched for a reported townhouse fire in the 6500 block of Zoysia Court in the Lincolnia area of Fairfax County.
Units arrived on the scene of a two-story, middle unit townhouse with fire showing from the rear of the home. The fire involved all three floors and was extending into the attic area. Crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire. There were no reports of civilian or firefighter injuries.
There were two occupants home at the time of the fire. One of the occupants discovered the fire and called 9-1-1. Smoke alarms activated after the occupant discovered the fire.
Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started within the fireplace chase at the terrace level. The fire was caused when radiant heat from the fire box ignited the structural components within the fireplace chase.
A total of two occupants were displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered and declined. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $93,750.
On Sunday, November 11 at approximately 7:29 a.m., units were dispatched to a reported house fire in the 5200 block of Dunleigh Drive in the Burke section of Fairfax County.
Units arrived on scene to find smoke showing from a two-story, single family home. Crews quickly found fire in the walls and ceiling of a second-floor bedroom. The fire was rapidly brought under control. There were no reported firefighter or civilian injuries.
The house was vacant when the fire occurred. A neighbor observed fire through a window and smoke coming from the roof line and called 9-1-1. The smoke alarms did not activate due to the location of the fire.
Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and started in the attic space above a bedroom. The cause of the fire is electrical in nature
No one was displaced because of the fire. Red Cross assistance was not needed. Damages as a result of the fire were approximately $55,000.
You can now view the Fairfax County Fire And Rescue Department’s Fiscal Year 17 and 18 Annual Report on line. Learn more about your fire and rescue department! Click on the cover below to view.