Hyderabad: Irresponsibly stubbing out cigarettes is the leading cause of most fire-accidents in the city. As it turns out, smoking is not just harmful for one’s health, it is also a fire hazard waiting to happen.
The Telangana State Disaster Response and Fire Services Department’s records show over 1,500 fire accidents that broke out in the city due to a carelessly put out cigarette. The most recent case was that of a bus that was ablaze at the Kukatpally metro station on Saturday.
From 2014 to 2018 careless smoking has taken the lion’s share of fire accidents in the state. While there were 14,077 fire accidents due to electrical malfunction, 22,126 fires broke out due to careless smoking.
“There has been a rise in the number of fire accidents due to smoking,” C Lakshmi Prasad, director in charge of the department said. People who smoke do not fully stub the cigarette out and the burning tip ends up close to a garbage pile or paper, which catches fire very easily.”
Even in Saturday’s incident at Kukatpally metro station, the investigating officers claim to have found a cigarette stub near the bus which they suspect to be the cause of the fire.
That this happened despite a ban on public smoking is what perturbs officials even more.
“The rise in such fire accidents only shows the attitude of the people when it comes to smoking in public,” an official said. “Fires of this particular origin are easy to avoid, if people begin smoking in designated areas and stub the cigarettes out before it ignites any flammable substance.”...