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Cigarettes Kill

by John R. Hall, Jr.

During the 1980s, smoking materials caused more than 200,000 fires per year, and resulted in more than 1,000 civilian deaths, more than 3,000 civilian injuries, and more than $300 million in direct property damage per year. All that when "smoking materials" refer only to lighted tobacco products, not matches or lighters. In 1990, fires caused by smoking materials dropped to less than 200,000. They declined steadily each year from 1990 to 1993 but increased slightly in 1994 and 1995.

In 1995, there were 153,400 smoking-material fires-a 1 percent increase from 1994. These fires resulted in 1,122 civilian deaths, 2,667 civilian injuries, and $507 million in direct property damage (see Table 1). Civilian deaths in smoking-material fires increased 22 percent in 1995, while civilian injuries decreased by 11 percent. Direct property damage in smoking-material fires also increased by 22 percent before adjusting for inflation.

Table 1. The 1995 U.S. Smoking-Material Fire Problem
Property Class Fires Civilian Deaths Civilian Injuries Direct Property Damage
Residential structures 27,000 (17.6%) 1,068 (95.2%) 2,364 (88.6%) $315 million (62.2%)
Nonresidential structures 8,400 (5.5%)  37 (3.3%) 134 (5.0%)  $168 million (33.2%)  
Vehicles 7,500 (4.9%)  11 (1.0%)  90 (3.4%)  $19 million (3.8%)  
Outdoor and other 110,400 (72.0%)  6 (0.5%)  79 (3.0%)  $4 million (0.8%) 
Total 153,400 (100.0%)  1,122 (100.0%)  2,667 (100.0%) $507 million (100.0%)
Source: NFIRS, NFPA Survey. Numbers of fires are expressed to the nearest hundred, civilian deaths and injuries to the nearest one, and direct property damage to the nearest million dollars. Totals may not equal sums due to rounding error.

Obviously, the civilian death toll is the most important aspect of the smoking-material fire problem because more civilians die in fires caused by smoking materials than in any other type of fire in the United States. The 1,068 civilian deaths in smoking-material residential fires represented 29 percent of the 3,695 civilian deaths in residential structure fires in 1995.

In 1995, "outdoor and other" fires accounted for 72 percent of fires started by smoking materials, vehicles accounted for roughly 5 percent, and structures for 23 percent. Although outside and other fires caused by smoking materials far outnumber the structure fires they cause, the highest number of deaths and injuries and the largest dollar losses occur in structures, and, more specifically, in residential structures.

Structure fires

According to statistics gathered from 1991 through 1995, out of 12 major causes of structure fires, smoking materials ranked first for civilian fire deaths and fourth for civilian fire injuries. Despite the high number of casualties, smoking materials ranked only eighth for number of structure fires and ninth for direct property damage. Cooking equipment; incendiary and suspicious causes; heating equipment; other equipment; electrical distribution equipment; appliances, tools, or air-conditioning equipment; and open flame all ranked ahead of smoking materials in number of structure fires. All of these causes of fires also resulted in more property damage, as did exposure to another hostile fire.

It will probably come as no surprise that most of the civilian deaths and injuries in smoking-material fires occur in residential structures. In 1995, in fact, 95 percent of all smoking-material fire deaths occurred in residential structures.

Although total smoking-material fires increased by 1 percent in 1995, residential smoking-material structure fires experienced a 4 percent drop, while nonresidential fires decreased by 11 percent. Direct property damage in smoking-material structure fires increased 19 percent after adjustment for inflation.

The most important part of the smoking-material fire problem-the number of structure fires-has declined by two-thirds, or 66 percent, since 1980, while the number of civilian deaths has dropped by 49 percent from the high in 1981 and 44 percent since tracking began in 1980. However, deaths per 100 smoking-material fires were 66 percent higher in 1995 than they were in 1980.

The average severity of smoking-related structure fires in terms of civilian injuries also increased from 1980 to 1995, up 45 percent from 4.85 per 100 structure fires to 7.05. And the average severity of structure fires in terms of direct property damage increased 69 percent-after adjustment for inflation-from $4,600 per structure fire in 1980 to $7,700 in 1995.

Nearly all smoking-material structure fires involved cigarettes (see Table 2). Very few fires-just 1 to 2 percent-and a very small percentage of associated losses-also 1 to 2 percent-were estimated to have been caused by some sort of smoking material definitely identified as something other than a cigarette.

Table 2. Smoking-Material Fires in Structures, by Type of Smoking Material, 1995
Residential Structures
Category Fires Civilian Deaths Civilian Injuries Direct Property Damage
Cigarette 23,900 (88.4%) 912 (85.4%) 2,136 (90.4%) $262 million (83.2%)
Cigar 300 (0.9%) 8 (0.7%) 36 (1.5%) $4 million (1.2%)
Pipe 100 (0.5%) 8 (0.7%) 5 (0.2%) $1 million (0.3%)
Unclassified 2,700 (10.1%) 140 (13.1%) 187 (7.9%) $48 million (15.3%)
Total 27,000 (100.0%) 1,068 (100.0%) 2,364 (100.0%) $315 million (100.0%)
Nonresidential Structures
Category Fires Civilian Deaths Civilian Injuries Direct Property Damage
Cigarette 7,000 (82.9%) 31 (83.8%) 119 (88.8%) $157 million (93.2%)
Cigar 100 (0.9%) 0 (0.0%) 0 (0.0%) $0 million (0.1%)
Pipe 100 (0.9%) 0 (0.0%) 0 (0.0%) $0 million (0.2%)
Unclassified 1,300 (15.2%) 6 (16.2%) 15 (11.2%) $11 million (6.5%)
Total 8,400 (100.0%) 37 (100.0%) 134 (100.0%) $168 million (100.0%)
Source: NFIRS, NFPA Survey. Numbers of fires are expressed to the nearest hundred, civilian deaths and injuries to the nearest one, and direct property damage to the nearest million dollars. Totals may not equal sums due to rounding.

Abandoning or carelessly discarding smoking materials was by far the leading cause of fires in both residential and nonresidential structures (see Table 3). In residential structures, falling asleep while smoking is the only other action that resulted in a sizable share of fires or associated losses. Incendiary and suspicious causes played a relatively greater role in nonresidential structures, accounting for 11 percent of fires and property losses and 14 percent of civilian injuries.

Table 3. Causes of Smoking-Material Structure Fires in the United States, 1991­1995
Unknowns Allocated
  Fires Civilian Deaths Civilian Injuries Direct Property Damage
(in Millions)
Abandoning or carelessly discarding
Residential 21,900 (74.9%) 614 (62.8%) 1,762 (64.6%) $234.9 (73.5%)
Nonresidential 7,400 (77.1%) 21 (79.8%) 158 (60.1%) $75.9 (76.5%)
Falling asleep
Residential 2,700 (9.3%) 195 (19.9%) 525 (19.3%) $27.2 (8.5%)
Nonresidential 200 (1.6%) 3 (10.1%) 24 (9.2%) $4.0 (4.1%)
Incendiary or suspicious causes
Residential 1,200 (4.1%) 10 (1.0%) 66 (2.4%) $13.7 (4.3%)
Nonresidential 1,000 (10.8%) 1 (2.3%) 37 (14.2%) $10.9 (11.0%)
Unclassified or unknown misuse of smoking material
Residential 800 (2.8%) 51 (5.3%) 108 (3.9%) $15.6 (4.9%)
Nonresidential 200 (2.5%) 0* (1.6%) 11 (4.3%) $1.9 (1.9%)
Child playing
Residential 400 (1.5%) 4 (0.4%) 40 (1.5%) $3.3 (1.0%)
Nonresidential 100 (1.5%) 0 (0.0%) 1 (0.6%) $0.6 (0.6%)
Unclassified or unknown misuse of ignited material
Residential 400 (1.4%) 14 (1.5%) 38 (1.4%) $4.8 (1.5%)
Nonresidential 100 (1.1%) 0 (1.6%) 4 (1.4%) $0.9 (1.0%)
Becoming unconscious due to drugs or alcohol, or mishandling due to mental or physical impairment
Residential 300 (1.1%) 55 (5.6%) 80 (2.9%) $6.0 (1.9%)
Nonresidential        
Unattended
Residential 300 (1.0%) 5 (0.5%)  17 (0.6%) $2.2 (0.7%)
Nonresidential        
Unclassified ignition factor
Residential 300 (1.0%) 15 (1.5%) 20 (0.7%) $3.4 (1.1%)
Nonresidential 100 (1.0%) 0 (0.0%) 2 (0.8%) $0.6 (0.6%)
Other known
Residential 900 (2.9%) 15 (1.5%) 71 (2.6%) $8.7 (2.7%)
Nonresidential 400 (4.5%) 1 (4.7%) 24 (9.3%) $4.4 (4.4%)
Total
Residential 29,300 (100.0%) 977 (100.0%) 2,729 (100.0%) $319.6 (100.0%)
Nonresidential 9,600 (100.0%) 27 (100.0%) 262 (100.0%) $99.2 (100.0%)
Source: NFIRS, NFPA Survey.
* Not zero but rounds to zero. Numbers of fires are expressed to the nearest hundred, civilian deaths and injuries to the nearest one, and direct property damage to the nearest hundred thousand dollars.
Totals may not equal sums due to rounding.

Smoking materials aren't the leading heat source of choice for either arsonists or children playing with fire. In fact, separate analyses show that only 2 to 3 percent of all incendiary or suspicious residential fires involved smoking materials as the heat source, and only 2 to 3 percent of all child-playing residential fires involved smoking materials.

Only 1 percent of smoking-material fires and 6 percent of associated civilian deaths in residential structures occur in fires attributable to drug or alcohol impairment or some other physical or mental impairment. However, these small percentages almost surely understate the frequency of drugs and alcohol as complicating factors. In fact, 18 percent of all civilian deaths in smoking fires were estimated to have involved victims impaired by drugs or alcohol.

Outdoor and vehicle fires

Outdoor or other fires, which include trash, grass, and brush fires, accounted for the largest share of smoking-material fires but for very little of the associated loss. Since 1980, "other" smoking-related fires have decreased 50 percent. The 16-year trend shows that these fires declined from 1980 through 1983, increased in 1984 and 1985, declined again from 1986 through 1993, and increased slightly in 1994 and 1995.

Though these fires resulted in what seems to be insubstantial death and dollar losses, they're potentially very damaging. One very serious fire, the 1989 Black Tiger Fire in Colorado,1 is suspected of having been caused by a carelessly discarded cigarette. This fire destroyed 2,100 acres of land and 44 homes and other structures, resulting in $10 million in property damage. Luckily, no one was killed.

In a 1992 fire in California, a carelessly discarded cigarette caused a forest fire that resulted in more than $10.9 million in property damage. The fire consumed 3,460 acres of valuable timber, and suppression efforts cost approximately $1.6 million. Two firefighters were injured. Again, no one was killed, though the potential for life loss was great. A year later, hunters carelessly discarded a cigarette that started the Marre Wildland Fire in Los Padres National Forest in California. News accounts stated that as many as 3,200 firefighters were fighting the blaze at one time, and suppression costs were estimated at $21 million.

In 1995, 5 percent of smoking-material fires and smaller shares of associated losses occurred in vehicles. Vehicle fires due to smoking materials rose sharply in 1995 but have decreased 68 percent overall since 1980.

What do smoking materials ignite?

Mattresses and bedding, upholstered furniture, and trash were the items most often ignited by smoking materials in structure fires. While trash fires in structures caused relatively few injuries and fewer deaths, trash was a factor in nonresidential structure fires and in the property damage incurred in those fires. In 1995, residential smoking-material fires involving mattresses and bedding decreased by 13 percent, while those involving trash dropped by 4 percent and those involving upholstered furniture decreased by 3 percent. In nonresidential structures, smoking-material fires involving mattresses and bedding declined by 7 percent, but those involving upholstered furniture or trash declined by 18 and 17 percent, respectively.

Two of the three leading items first ignited, mattresses and upholstered furniture, have been the subjects of large-scale, national efforts to reduce their susceptibility to ignition. The fires in which they're involved have declined by about three-fourths since 1980, but those involving trash have declined by nearly two-thirds. A mandatory U.S. Standard for the Flammability of Mattresses (and Mattress Pads), Title 16 CFR 1632, was enacted in 1973, and a voluntary standard for upholstered furniture, the so-called "Upholstered Furniture Action Council (UFAC) Standard," was introduced in the late 1970s. At the time, the UFAC standard was judged substantial enough to remove the need for a mandatory action. Currently, however, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is reviewing a proposal to set and enforce federal upholstered furniture flammability standards, particularly in respect to small open-flame ignitions.

There's no obvious reason why fires involving items that haven't received direct attention, such as trash, are declining, even though trash fires haven't been declining as rapidly in the last few years as they did before. It's also virtually impossible to measure directly the impact of the furniture and mattress standards on the fire experience because it's not known what percentage of the population owns furniture and bedding made after the standards were adopted.

The success of these two standards has been measured by studies of shifts in production toward less-ignitable materials.(2) Composite indices of the susceptibility to smoking-material ignitions for upholstered furniture and mattresses in use declined 18.4 percent and 36.1 percent, respectively, from 1980 to 1984, compared to declines of 37.8 percent and 35.1 percent, respectively, in the number of residential structure fires that began with ignition of these two types of items per billion cigarettes consumed. This means that the ignitability indices match the decline in mattress fire rates quite well and the decline in upholstered furniture fire rates less well.

Forecasting civilian deaths

Forecasts based on these patterns show that, although continued decreases in fires per billion cigarettes consumed were expected, these would be largely balanced by expected increases in civilian deaths per thousand fires involving smoking materials. This meant that civilian fire deaths due to smoking-material ignitions were forecast to be primarily a function of changes in cigarette consumption, because the rate of change in civilian deaths per billion cigarettes consumed was forecast to be less than 1 percent per year, based on 1980 to 1984 data.

These forecasts can now be checked against 11 years of actual fire experience. Combining these 11 years, the 1984 to 1995 net decline in cigarette consumption was 19 percent. The predicted net decline in civilian deaths from 1984 to 1995 would be 30 percent, a 19 percent decline plus 11 years of additional 1-percent-a-year drops due to projected declines in deaths per billion cigarettes consumed. And there actually was a 30 percent decrease from 1984 to 1995.

In 1988, fire deaths were well above the forecast. In 1991, they were well below the forecast; and since 1988, except for 1991 and 1995, they've been consistently below the forecast by a slowly growing margin. Overall, the forecast has been a somewhat accurate guide to actual fire experience, although it's often predicted a smoother and less dramatic decline than actual fire experience has shown. In 1995, forecast and reality matched nearly exactly.

Of course, it's too soon to conclude that reductions in cigarette consumption are enough to produce continued declines in fire deaths. Other major changes-altering careless smoking behavior and creating smoking materials that are less likely to ignite other items-may be key elements in reducing the largest part of the civilian fire death problem.

Patterns for victims of smoking-material fires

From 1991 to 1995, children age 6 to 18 had the lowest fire death risks in residential structure fires started by smoking materials, while children age 5 and under had rates similar to adults age 30 to 45. Past childhood, death rates rose with age, and people 80 and older had the highest rates.

Nevertheless, 11 percent of civilian deaths and 12 percent of civilian injuries in residential smoking-material fires are suffered by children. This reflects those children who smoke, but even more, it reflects children living in households with adults who smoke. The principal risk, however, is to adults, and the risk of dying in a smoking-material fire rises steadily from age 18. In the over-80 age group, the risk of death due to a smoking-material fire is more than six times the risk for adults ages 19 to 29.

The high risk of death for older adult smokers may be even higher, because the percentage of people over age 65 who currently smoke is less than half of the percentage for 18- to 64-year-olds (see Table 4). While one can't assume that all victims of smoking-material fires are themselves smokers, this large disparity in the likelihood of being a smoker, running counter to the risk of dying in a smoking-material fire, suggests that the risk of death for older smokers may be much higher than indicated.

Table 4. Percent of Population Smoking
A. Trends
Year Male Female  
1970 44.3% 30.8%
1980 38.5% 29.0%
1983* 35.5% 28.7%
1985* 33.2% 28.0%
1987* 31.5% 26.2%
1991* 28.1% 23.5%
1992* 28.6% 24.6%
1993 27.7% 22.5%
Age 1974 1988 1991 1992 1993 1994
12 to 17 25.0% 11.8% 10.8% 9.6% 9.6% 9.8%
18 to 25 48.8% 35.2% 32.2% 31.9% 29.0% 26.5%
26 or older 39.1% 29.8% 28.8% 27.4% 25.3% 24.7%
26 to 34 NA NA 32.9% 33.7% 30.1% NA
35 or older NA NA 26.6% 25.3% 23.8% NA
B. Detailed Patterns 1993
Age Male Female
18 to 24 28.8% 22.9%
25 to 34 30.2% 27.3%
35 to 44 32.0% 27.4%
45 to 64 29.2% 23.0%
65 and older 13.5% 10.5%
All age groups over 18 27.7% 22.5%

Sources: For patterns by sex 1970-­1987, U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Office of Smoking and Health, Reducing the Health Consequences of Smoking, 1989. For patterns by age 1974-­1993, U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Household Survey on Drug Abuse; 1993. For 1991­1993 patterns by age and sex, U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Household Survey on Drug Abuse; 1993. For 1991­1994 patterns, Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1994­1996.

*1970 and 1980 populations included 17 years old and older, 1983 population included 18 years old and older, and 1985 and 1987 populations included 20 years old and older, and 1991 and 1992 included 18 years old and older.
Source: Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1996, U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census.

Table 4 also indicates that the current difference between the percentages of men and women who smoke is about 5 percentage points. This is relatively small, particularly compared to 1980, when the difference was more than 9 percentage points. However, men had a death and injury rate between one and a half and two times the rate for women for smoking-material residential structure fires between 1991 and 1995. Even allowing for the fact that not all victims of smoking-material fires are themselves the smokers who caused the fire, it appears that male smokers have a risk of death and injury due to smoking material fires that's between one and a half and two times the risk for female smokers.

Smoking-related fire death rates are similar for male and female victims in most age groups under the age of 19, possibly because children typically don't smoke and may be equally exposed to risk from fires started by adult smokers. The death rate for male victims is roughly two to three times that of female victims for every age group over 18, except for adults age 70 to 79. The same is true for injuries, although the ratio varies more than it does for deaths.

A majority, or 57 percent, of those who die in residential smoking-material fires are in the same room as the fire. This is much higher than the percentage of those who die in all types of residential fires who are in the same room as the fire, which is 45 percent.

Most victims of residential smoking-material fires were either asleep or slowed by drug or alcohol impairment, handicap, or age before the fire. Those who died in smoking-material fires were more likely than those who died in residential fires in general to be coded as impaired by drugs or alcohol-18 percent versus 10 percent-although all such assessments may be significantly understated. Fire officials find it difficult to assess victims' prefire conditions, particularly in the absence of autopsy results, which are rarely available. And fire officials have no place to code multiple conditions, such as "intoxicated and asleep." One landmark study found that 35 percent of all fire fatalities and 51 percent of fatal fire victims age 20 or older in a sample from Maryland had blood alcohol levels at or above 0.1 percent. (3) A more recent study conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found that 40 percent of fatal fires in rural areas of North Carolina involved someone impaired by drugs or alcohol. (4)

Half of all deaths and one-third of injuries in smoking-material fires in residential structures occurred in homes that had no automatic detection systems. In 50 percent of the deaths and 37 percent of the injuries, the victims had no warning because there were no smoke detectors.

The addition of working smoke detectors could have a considerable impact on the number of civilian deaths in residential smoking-material fires. Smoke detectors may not help reduce the number of deaths in fires in which the victims are intimately involved in ignition, but they might give the other 69 percent of victims the precious few minutes they need to escape.

Patterns by day of week and time of day

Based on the figures from 1991 to 1995, residential structure fires due to everything but smoking occur in slightly higher percentages on weekends than on weekdays. Smoking-material fires in residential structures are even more likely to occur on weekends than residential fires due to all other causes. More than one-third of civilian deaths and injuries sustained during residential smoking-material fires happened on Saturday and Sunday.

There's also a strong time pattern for residential smoking-material fires and the losses they cause: They're more likely to occur between midnight and 6:00 a.m. than fires caused by anything else. These late-night and early-morning deaths aren't due solely to falling asleep while smoking. Cigarettes discarded or dropped in the evening can smolder for hours before igniting combustible materials while people sleep in other rooms.

What's being done?

Smoking material fires are a major cause of concern because they result in more deaths than any other type of fire. In 1995, the number of civilian deaths rose sharply from the previous year and easily accounted for the largest share of residential fire deaths. Realistically, any efforts to reduce fire deaths in this country must address the smoking-material fire problem.

In the '70s and early '80s, efforts to reduce smoking-material fires focused on modifying the items most frequently ignited by smoking-materials-mattresses and upholstered furniture. These new products were designed using materials more resistant to cigarette ignitions, and since those initiatives, there have been major reductions in the number of fires involving upholstered furniture and mattresses. However, we've also seen a drop in all other smoking-material fires, and the reasons for this are unclear. What's clear is that this initiative alone isn't enough to ensure continued decreases in smoking-material fires and fire deaths. And although these products are more resistant to ignition by smoking materials, some may actually burn faster or more intensely or produce more toxic smoke once ignited.

In the '80s, attention shifted from products ignited by smoking materials to the materials themselves. Early efforts resulted in the Cigarette Safety Act of 1984, which established the Technical Study Group (TSG) on Cigarette and Little Cigar Fire Safety to conduct studies on the feasibility of developing cigarettes and little cigars that would be less likely to start fires. In 1987, the TSG reported that it was technically feasible to develop a cigarette that was less likely to ignite other items.

As a result of continuing efforts in this area, the Fire Safe Cigarette Act of 1990 was passed in August of that year. This legislation required the Center for Fire Research at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), under the direction of the CPSC, to carry out three tasks. The first was to "develop a standard test method to determine cigarette ignition propensity." The second entailed compiling "performance data for cigarettes using the standard test method developed." And the third was to "conduct laboratory studies on, and computer modeling of, ignition physics to develop valid, user-friendly predictive capabilities."

In addition, the CPSC was responsible for designing and implementing a study "to collect baseline and follow-up data about the characteristics of cigarettes, products ignited, and smokers involved in fires and develop information on societal costs of cigarette-ignited fires." Working with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, CPSC was also asked "to develop information on changes in the toxicity of smoke and resultant health effects from cigarette prototypes."

NFPA worked with eight fire departments nationwide collecting data on cigarette fires for this project, which is now complete. The results of these data proved consistent with the findings of the lab tests performed by NIST. Both showed that ignition propensity is related to the physical characteristics of cigarettes.

A final report on these activities was presented to Congress in August 1993. In February 1994, Congressman Joseph Moakley (D-Massachusetts) sponsored a bill that would require the CPSC to issue a safety standard for cigarettes in accordance with the findings of the final report and in consultation with NIST. Several large-city fire chiefs rallied around Moakley in support of this legislation, but the bill didn't pass.

In the past few years, it's seemed that an out-and-out war has been declared on cigarette smoking. Whole towns have banned smoking in public buildings, and some have even made it a crime for minors to possess cigarettes. A major radio and television public education campaign has been introduced to try to reduce cigarette smoking across the United States. These actions will ultimately have a positive impact on the future smoking-material fire experience. But is it enough? Public education is also needed to address the risks of smoking and fires and to make everyone, not just smokers themselves, aware of the danger of smoking-material fires.

The overall downward trend in smoking-material fires and fire deaths gives reason for hope, but we must continue to look for new approaches to ensure continued declines. Strategies that call for protection systems that can enhance safety after a fire has begun, such as smoke detectors or home sprinklers, have potential, particularly since smoking-material fires often smolder for a significant period before the first flame, and such fires afford more time for early detection.

But the potential of post-ignition strategies is limited by the unusually high percentage of smoking-material fire deaths involving drug or alcohol impairment, age, and physical or mental disabilities. In addition, a significant number of smoking-material fire deaths involve victims in the room of fire origin, and those who are close to the fire or unable to respond effectively are difficult to save using strategies that operate after the fire has begun.

Smoking-material fires continue to be among the most difficult U.S. fire problems to address. Thus far, no single attempt has proven to be the solution. The ignitability and burning properties of those items most frequently ignited must be reexamined so that we can determine whether other opportunities exist. We must also reconsider public education possibilities and analyze fire protection systems as options. Smokers who can't or won't quit can be taught self-protective behaviors, such as using sturdy, large ashtrays and not smoking in bed. And when appropriate, efforts on the legislative front should be pursued.



Notes

1. Black Tiger Fire Case Study, prepared by NFPA, sponsored by the National Wildland/Urban Interface Fire Protection Initiative. Copies are available from NFPA's Fire Investigations Department.

2. See, for example, John R. Hall, Jr., Final Report: Expected Changes in Fire Damages from Reducing Cigarette Ignition Propensity, Prepared for the Technical Study Group of the Cigarette Safety Act of 1984, Quincy, Mass.: NFPA, July 16, 1987.

3. Walter G. Berl and Byron M. Halpin, Human Fatalities from Unwanted Fires, Laurel, Md.: John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, December 1978, Table VIII.

4. Carol W. Runyan, et al., "Risk Factors for Fatal Residential Fires," The New England Journal of Medicine, September 17, 1992 (Volume 327, Number 12), p. 859.

How to get this report

To get a copy of the complete smoking-material fire report or any other NFPA report, call Nancy Schwartz at the One Stop Data Shop at (617) 984-7450.

Reprinted from NFPA Journal, January/February 1998, p 56-62. Reprinted by permission of NFPA Journal.
Please contact the NFPA Library (617) 984-7445 or e-mail library@nfpa.org for more information.

 
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