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Guelph Fire Dept. Urges Safe Cigarette/Matches Disposal

Web posted on January 16, 2014

Guelph, On, January 15, 2014 The Guelph Fire Department is urging people to use caution when disposing of cigarettes, matches, and lighters.

This warning comes days after two separate fires related to careless smoking.

On New Year's Eve, firefighters from five stations responded to a fire that broke out at about 9 p.m. at a home at 41 Irving Crescent. The fire caused an estimated $600,000 in damage.

Following an investigation by the Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) it was determined the fire, which started in the garage and quickly spread to the house, was accidental due to the careless discarding of smokers' articles. The OFM investigates all fires that involve dollar losses of $500,000 or more. Members of the Guelph Fire Department and Guelph Police Service assisted in the investigation.

"Fortunately, no lives were lost," says Guelph Fire Prevention Officer Matt Valeriote. "Careless smoking is the leading cause of fire injuries and fatalities as well as the fourth leading cause of preventable house fires in Ontario."

The Guelph Fire Department is asking people who smoke, and those who live with them, to follow these safety tips.

- Smoke outside
- Use large, deep, sturdy, non-combustible ashtrays to extinguish cigarettes
- Before disposing of butts and ashes, soak them in water
- Keep ashtrays away from anything that can burn
- Never smoke in bed

Keep cigarettes, lighters and matches up high and locked away from children

Residents can call 519-763-8111 or visit for more fire safety information.