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Safety warning issued after cigarette starts house fire

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) has issued a safety warning after a discarded cigarette started a fire at a house in Castleford Road, Normanton, on Friday evening (Jan 2).

Engines from Normanton and Castleford attended the two storey terrace house at 8.21pm where the fire was contained to the lounge area.

A woman and a female child were out of the property on their arrival.

A Fire Investigation Officer concluded the fire had been caused by a cigarette end which had been placed into a candle holder on a window sill. The cigarette had not been properly stubbed out and set fire to the curtains before spreading to the sofa and carpet and some of the room contents.

Both occupants were upstairs at the time and the adult was alerted by a smoke detector.

Fire Investigation Officer Gary Kendrew said: “The occupant did the correct thing in that she closed the doors to the lounge, which contained the fire to this area, and got herself and the child outside.

“The layout of the house meant they had to pass close to the fire to get out of the property so this would have been quite a frightening experience for both.

“We cannot stress enough the importance of being careful with cigarette ends. Always make sure they are stubbed out properly and use an appropriate ashtray, not a makeshift one.

“A smoke alarm is vital and in this instance it has alerted the occupant to the fire and prevented a possible tragedy.”

The woman and the young child went to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation.

Damage to the property was contained to the lounge area.

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