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Smoking Near Oxygen Tank Blamed For Fatal Fire In Republic

Smoking Near Oxygen Tank Blamed For Fatal Fire In Republic

Smoking Near Oxygen Tank Blamed For Fatal Fire In Republic

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(KTTS News) — A woman has died after a house fire Sunday night in Republic.

Firefighters say the fire started because the 73-year-old woman was smoking near her oxygen tank in the 2700 block of Moonlight Street.

Firefighters rescued the woman, but she died at the hospital.

Firefighters say there were no working smoke detectors in the home.

Press Release

The Republic Fire Department is warning residents to the dangers of smoking near medically required oxygen systems after this act caused the death of a Republic resident.

Firefighters were called to a house fire in the 2700 block of Moonlight Steet on Sunday, November 26, 2023, at approximately 6:24 p.m.

Firefighters rescued a 73-year-old female from the home.

The victim was transported to a local hospital where unfortunately she passed away late yesterday afternoon due to the injuries sustained from the fire.

This fire was caused by smoking while using oxygen in the home.

The home had very little fire damage to the inside but had heavy smoke and heat damage throughout and unfortunately had no working smoke detectors in it to alert the resident.

The City of Republic Fire Department is warning area residents about the importance of safely using oxygen in homes.

The air we breathe consists of approximately 21% oxygen.

However, the concentrator machines and cylinders that patients use provide 100 percent pure oxygen.

Oxygen is a medical gas that can be a fire hazard if not used correctly.

When oxygen comes into contact with an open flame or ignition source it can accelerate the fire growth rapidly.

Safety tips for using home oxygen tanks

Post “no smoking” signs in and outside of the home to remind residents and guests not to smoke.

If oxygen is used in the home, the amount of oxygen in the air, furniture, clothing, hair, and bedding goes up, making it easier for a fire to start and spread. This means that there is a higher risk of both fires and burns.

Never use an open flame, such as candles, matches, wood stoves, and sparking toys, when oxygen is in use.

Keep oxygen cylinders at least five feet from a heat source, open flames or electrical devices.

People who may have difficulty escaping a fire should have a phone near their bed or chair.

Make sure that the home has working smoke alarms. Test them at least monthly.

Have a home fire escape plan with two ways out of every room and an outside meeting place.
Practice the plan at least twice a year.

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