Press Releases


Judy Parker, APR
770.206.1477, office

Tisa Moore
770.206.1473, office

For Immediate Release

Prevent the Number 1 Cause of Home Fire Deaths: Smoking

Release Date: 12/14/2010

December 14, 2010— The combination of cold weather and the holiday season translates into a time when even more people smoke indoors at home…“a triple whammy” increase in potential fatal home fires. The weather and holidays also increase the likelihood of alcohol consumption, which may result in a smoker falling asleep with a lit cigarette. Every year about 1,000 people – smokers and non-smokers – in the U.S. die in preventable home fires caused by smoking materials.

Sandy Springs Fire Rescue urges you to take these precautions to prevent this tragedy from occurring:

  • If you smoke, smoke outside.

  • Use deep, sturdy ashtrays.

  • Make sure cigarettes and ashes are out—soak them in water before throwing them away.

  • Do not put ashtrays on chairs or sofas—they ignite very quickly.

  • Never smoke in a home where oxygen is being used.

  • Be alert—if you are sleepy, have been drinking or have taken medicine that makes you drowsy, put your cigarette out first.

Also, remember these primary fire safety tips:

  • Place properly installed and maintained smoke alarms on every level of your home.

  • Create an escape plan. Plan two ways to escape from every room. Practice the escape plan with everyone in the home.

  • Keep an eye on space heaters and make sure they have a proper radius between items surrounding them—always turn them off when leaving the room or going to bed.

  • Don’t overload plugs when plugging in Christmas tree lights. Plug the lights into a surge protector, then plug the surge protector into the socket.

  • Keep Christmas trees watered and take dry and brittle trees out of the house.

  • For more information on the City of Sandy Springs or Sandy Springs Fire Rescue, visit or call 770-730-5600.