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Smoking safety warning after Isle of Dogs tower block balcony fire

PUBLISHED: 09:00 16 July 2019 | UPDATED: 09:22 16 July 2019

A 13th floor balcony of a residential tower block on Limeharbour in the Isle of Dogs was damaged by fire. Picture: London Fire Brigade.

A 13th floor balcony of a residential tower block on Limeharbour in the Isle of Dogs was damaged by fire. Picture: London Fire Brigade.

Archant

A balcony fire at a tower block in the Isle of Dogs, which prompted 67 calls to 999, was caused by the "unsafe disposal of smoking materials."

Firefighters were called to a "very visible" blaze on a 13th floor balcony at a block of flats on Limeharbour around 5.30pm on Friday (July 12), which took crews from six stations until 6.57pm to get under control.

The outside decking area, shared by two flats, was damaged by fire and there was minor damage to one flat.

Investigators believe the fire was caused by the unsafe disposal of smoking materials on the decking.

Firefighters are urging smokers to ensure cigarettes are extinguished fully and disposed of carefully.

Around 40 fire fighters have put out a blaze on the roof of an Isle of Dogs residential building. Picture: @imrankhwaja/@Cryptomarc0.Around 40 fire fighters have put out a blaze on the roof of an Isle of Dogs residential building. Picture: @imrankhwaja/@Cryptomarc0.

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A London Fire Brigade (LFB) spokesperson said: "If you smoke it is vitally important you stub it right out, preferably in an ashtray.

"Always ensure your cigarette is completely out when you've finished smoking it.

"If you don't, you risk causing a fire as you don't know what it may land on which could potentially start a fire."

LFB advises smokers to: ensure smoke alarms are fitted in every room that is regularly used in your home, including in the hallways; to never smoke in bed; and to keep matches and lighters out of children's reach.

Lit cigarettes or cigars should never be left unattended and ashtrays should be emptied carefully, ensuring all smoking materials are stubbed out and cold.

Pictures and video of the fire, which could be seen from a distance, circulated on social media.

About 40 firefighters from the Millwall, Poplar, Plaistow, Whitechapel, East Greenwich and Bethnal Green stations attended the scene.

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