Where there's smokes: Cigarette fires plague Chattanooga this ye - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Where there's smokes: Cigarette fires plague Chattanooga this year

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (Times Free Press) - With three residential fires since April 1 tied to cigarettes and another two started by cigarette lighters, Chattanooga fire officials have a message for smokers: Extinguish your smokes properly by wetting them and keep the lighters away from children.

"Especially here recently, the main cause is due to the improper disposal of the ashes and butts where they're just dumping it in the trash can with combustible products," said Chattanooga Fire Marshal Bill Matlock. "When you do that, you're just asking for trouble."

A Thursday afternoon fire at the Courts at Waterford on Shallowford Road is believed to have begun after residents discarded their cigarette butts into a plastic bag and placed the bag on the balcony of their apartment.

It is believed the butts smoldered and heated up enough in the bag to start the fire that spread to the exterior siding of the balcon

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