Cigarette warning from fire chiefs

THE dangers of carelessly discarding lit cigarettes were put in the spotlight last night as Suffolk fire service's headquarters was turned into a massive advertising hoarding.

THE dangers of carelessly discarding lit cigarettes were put in the spotlight last night as Suffolk fire service's headquarters was turned into a massive advertising hoarding.

The safety campaign's slogan Put It Out - Right Out was projected onto the front of the building in Colchester Road, Ipswich, from 6.30pm on the eve of No Smoking Day.

And brave schoolgirl Terri Calvesbert, who suffered 90% burns in an accidental fire at her home in Chantry in 1998, was also there with dad Paul to back the campaign.

Put It Out - Right Out aims to make sure that smokers stub out cigarettes and other smoking materials properly to prevent the risk of a fire starting and spreading with tragic consequences.


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The move comes after two people died in house fires in the county in only two months this year - in Lowestoft and Newmarket - with both fires believed to have started after cigarettes had not been properly put out.

Martyn Thorpe , community fire safety officer, said: "That is two deaths too many, and reflects a higher figure for fire fatalities than we would expect at this point in any year.

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"That is why we are making the campaign message as obvious as we can - and projecting it on the front of headquarters will hopefully mean much wider exposure.

"Cigarette fires are a big killer, because they often happen at night after people have gone to bed or fallen asleep. People are often more relaxed in the evening and may be tired or have had a drink, so they don't take as much care putting out their cigarettes.

"Cigarettes burn at 700 degrees centigrade, so a final check could be a lifesaver for you and your family."

Cllr Peter Monk, portfolio holder for public protection, said: "Reducing the numbers of lives lost by accidents is a priority for Suffolk County Council, and we want to get the numbers down to zero."

As part of the campaign the council's Trading Standards department will also tackle the problem of underage people being sold cigarettes and checks will be carried out to uncover where the sales are taking place.

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