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Dangers of cigarettes highlighted following Towyn fire


The dangers of carelessly discarded cigarettes are being highlighted following a fire last Wednesday (31st October) on Gors Road, off Kinmel Way, Towyn where a woman and two dogs sadly died.


Four appliances were mobilised to reports of smoke billowing from the property at 08.48hrs. On arrival crews were confronted with a dormer bungalow ground floor heavily involved in fire. Four sets of breathing apparatus, two hose reel jets and one main jet were deployed in tackling the incident.


A female casualty was located at the property by firefighters. She was transferred to an ambulance to be taken to hospital, but died shortly afterwards. Two dogs also perished in the fire.


Following a joint investigation by North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and North Wales Police, the cause of the fire is thought to be a carelessly discarded cigarette.


Bob Mason from North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said:

“My condolences and deepest sympathies go to the family and friends involved in this tragic incident.


"The fire investigation has found that the cause of the fire was a carelessly discarded cigarette - this incident clearly highlights the dangers of not extinguishing cigarettes properly in suitable containers.


"It is vital to make sure all smoking materials are put out safely, especially before bed time.


"If you have elderly relatives or friends who are smokers, make them aware of the possible dangers - by following the steps below they can help cut the risk of a smoking related fire in the home:


-Take extra care when you're tired, taking any sort of drugs or have been drinking alcohol. It's very easy to fall asleep without while your cigarette is still burning


- Never smoke in bed - if you need to lie down, don't light up. You could doze off and set your bed on fire


- Never leave lit cigarettes, cigars or pipes unattended - they can easily overbalance as they burn down


- Buy child-resistant lighters and matchboxes - every year children die by starting fires with matches and lighters. Keep these where children can't reach them


- Use a proper, heavy ashtray that can't tip over easily and is made of a material that won't burn. Make sure your cigarette is not still burning when you are finished - put it out, right out


- Tap your ash into an ashtray, never a wastebasket containing other rubbish - and don't let the ash or cigarette ends build up in the ashtray


- Install and maintain a smoke alarm - when a fire starts, you only have a few minutes to escape. A working smoke alarm can buy you valuable time to get out, stay out and dial 999. You can get a basic smoke alarm for the same price as a packet of cigarettes. Better still are those smoke alarms with long-life batteries or are mains-powered.


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