Langford Fire Rescue put out six fires in two days, five of which were caused by discarded cigarette butts. (Facebook/Langford Fire Rescue)

Langford fire douses six fires in two days – five from cigarette butts

‘The world is not a personal ashtray’ says fire chief

Langford Fire Rescue put out six fire in the last two days, five of which were caused by discarded cigarette butts.

Chris Aubrey, Langford Fire Rescue chief, said four of the fires took place on Wednesday with wind and dry ground being a factor.

“It’s been good for the last little bit and now all of a sudden we’ve had a spike,” Aubrey said. “It hasn’t gotten any wetter, it’s still dry, so it is disappointing that these incidents are on the rise.”

READ ALSO: Grass fire near Langford school under investigation

Aubrey said the fires took place in dry flowerbeds near businesses such as West Shore Town Centre and Costco. He suspects individuals are discarding lit cigarette butts before entering a business and a lack of ash trays outside the area causes people to toss them on the ground.

Stomping on a cigarette butt or flicking the ash off it is not enough to extinguish it, Aubrey said.

“The heat is still there and if the wind picks it up it can blow into a combustible area like nearby grass,” Aubrey said.

He noted that anyone who lights a cigarette needs to have a plan in place to properly extinguish and dispose of it.

“The world is not a personal ashtray,” Aubrey said.

READ ALSO: Langford fire dealt with seven fires in the last ten days

Incidents like these are typically a problem every summer, Aubrey said. But as the wildfire situation gets more intense, people begin to recognize how dangerous they are. These situations are more prevalent in early to late spring because people get in the habit of tossing their cigarette butts on the ground in the winter.

“Once we start seeing massive evacuations of homes it typically gets better,” Aubrey said. “People know they shouldn’t be doing it but shouldn’t be waiting until it gets dry to stop.”

shalu.mehta@goldstreamgazette.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Studies for E&N corridor still on track after BC Transit investments

Recent investment in bus fleet expansion doesn’t slow studies into alternative transportation routes

Two brands of ice cream sandwiches recalled due to presence of metal

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a recall on Iceberg and Originale Augustin brands

Single parent resource centre continues operations in partially-condemned building

Victoria’s 1Up Single Parent Resource Centre moves back into heritage home

Townhouses on the rise in popularity in Greater Victoria

A report finds 152 townhouse units in the construction pipeline and coming onto market in 2020.

WATCH: Residents flock to 32nd annual Moss Street paint-in

More than 190 artists took over Moss Street for Saturday event

VIDEO: Bystander training gains traction as tool to prevent sexual harassment, violence

Julia Gartley was sexually assaulted after an event, and no one stepped in to help

Sexual assaults, extortion on the rise even as crime rates stay low: Stats Canada

Rates of police-reported sexual assault rose for the fourth year in a row

Vancouver Island teens missing after vehicle found ablaze near Dease Lake, BC

RCMP say a body discovered nearby not one of the missing teens

A year later, ceremony commemorates victims of the Danforth shooting

It’s the one-year anniversary of when a man opened fire along the bustling street before shooting and killing himself

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

The federal government apologized in 1988 for its racism against ‘enemy aliens’

B.C. VIEWS: NDP pushes ahead with Crown forest redistribution

This isn’t the time for a radical Indigenous rights agenda

Two dead in two-vehicle crash between Revelstoke and Golden

RCMP are investigating the cause of the crash

Most Read