‘Misplaced smoking materials’ spark fire in Edmonds home Wednesday

A fire on the second floor of an Edmonds home that causes more than $90,000 in damage was started accidentally by “misplaced  smoking materials,” a spokeswoman for Snohomish County Fire District 1 said. No one was injured in the blaze, which was reported around 1:50 p.m.

Dispatchers received multiple 9-1-1 calls reporting smoke and flames coming from the two-story house at the end of a long driveway in the 8700 block of 236th Street Southwest, said Leslie Hynes, public information officer for Snohomish County Fire District 1, which provides fire and emergency medical service to the City of Edmonds. “Flames were visible in a window above the garage and smoke was coming from the roof when firefighters arrived,” Hynes said.

Firefighters quickly extinguished the fire and kept the flames contained to two rooms on the upper level of the home, she said, but fire and heavy smoke damage on the second floor left the house uninhabitable. Red Cross is assisting the homeowner, a man in his 60s. He does not have insurance.

Firefighters offer these safety tips to prevent smoking-related fires:

– Use ashtrays with a wide, stable base that are hard to tip over. If it wobbles, it won’t work.
– Put it out – all the way, all the time. The cigarette needs to be completely stubbed out in the ashtray.
– Soak cigarette butts and ashes in water before throwing them away. Never toss hot cigarette butts or ashes in the trash.
– Chair and sofas catch on fire fast and burn fast. Don’t put ash trays on them. If people have been smoking in the home, check for cigarettes under cushions.
– Never smoke in a home where oxygen is used. Oxygen makes any fire burn hotter and faster.
– If you are drowsy or falling asleep, put out the cigarette. Never smoke in bed.
– Properly install and maintain smoke alarms on every level of your home and in all sleeping areas.
– Have an escape plan. Plan two ways to escape from every room and practice your escape plan at least twice a year.
– Keep matches and lighters up high, out of children’s sight and reach

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