One of the potentially fatal side effects of smoking that people often forget to discuss is the risk of fire. Thousands of people across the globe are killed or badly injured each year in smoking-related fires. According to the National Fire Protection Agency in the United States, cigarettes and smoking paraphernalia like matches and lighters are “the number one cause of civilian fire deaths.” This is just another example of how much destruction smoking and cause outside of the smoker’s physical body.
Most cigarette-induce fires start when a smoker has fallen asleep without putting out his or her cigarette. This usually happens in a bed, chair or some other comfortable place in the home and this is especially dangerous because fires in these areas spread rapidly and make it difficult for people in the house to escape or for fire workers to rescue them. Smoking fires can also occur when people thrown matches away that are still embers or other misuse and mishandling of smoking materials and supplies.
One of the most devastating aspects of cigarette-induced fires is the fact that they often rip families apart by way of death. Children perish, mothers perish, father perish—any combination of family members and their friends can die in a fire caused by smoking and the pain for the survivors can be excruciating. Imagine that you are a smoker who has caused a home fire that took the lives of your two children—but you survived. If there is any kind of accident that should never happen, that never need happen, it is a smoking fire.
While many disaster prevention agencies list ways that you can fire-proof your home or smoking habits (fire-safe cigarettes, deep ash trays, ash trays with sand), we would rather take the opportunity to point out that the risks associated with smoking provide a good opportunity for you to consider quitting your tobacco habit all together. If you make the decision to throw away your last pack of cigarettes for good, then worrying about starting a fire while you smoke will fade away into the past along with all your other smoking memories. Of course, no matter how preventative you are, accidents can always happen. That is just a fact of life. But taking the measures to protect yourself are invaluable, especially when more lives than your own are at stake. The risk of cigarette-induced fires and the devastations they cause should give you enough incentive to kick your tobacco habit and start on a new path towards health and happiness!