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Springfield Fire Department News Releases

Posted on: March 10, 2022

Careless smoking leading cause of accidental fires in Springfield


In 2022, the Springfield Fire Department has already responded to five residential structure fires resulting from careless smoking.

On average, the department responds to nearly 20 fires per year which occur as a result of careless smoking or inappropriate disposal of smoking materials.

“The leading cause of accidental fires in the City of Springfield is one which is completely preventable through use of safe practices,” said Fire Chief David Pennington 

To keep you and your family safe, the Springfield Fire Department recommends these safety tips if you smoke:

  • Never leave lit cigarettes or charging electronic cigarettes unattended.  
  • Use deep sturdy ashtrays with a stable base, such as a table, that is difficult to tip over.  
  • Do not discard cigarettes in potted plants, landscaping, dried grass, leaves or other things that can easily ignite. 
  • Never smoke in bed or while drowsy.
  • Smoke outside. Most fire fatalities result from fires that are started in living rooms, family rooms or bedrooms.
  • Never smoke or allow anyone to smoke where medical oxygen is used. Medical oxygen can cause materials to ignite more easily and make fires burn at a faster, hotter rate. 
  • Do not smoke around flammable liquids such as gasoline or oil-soaked rags.
  • Keep cigarettes, lighters, matches and other smoking materials out of the reach of children.  
  • Soak cigarette butts and ashes in water before throwing them away. Warm ashes dumped in waste cans can smolder for hours, then ignite. 

Working smoke alarms save lives. Smoke alarms should be installed and maintained in every sleeping room, outside each sleeping area, and on every level of your home, including your basement. . If you need assistance with replacement of your battery or need a new smoke alarm, please contact the Springfield Fire Department at 417-874-2300. Batteries and smoke alarms are installed by your firefighters free of charge.


For media only: For more information, call the Springfield Fire Department media line at 417-874-2301.

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