Cigarette butt ignites small DRW brushfire

Residents catch it quick with hoses

Brush fire comes close to home

BEND, Ore. - A small brushfire in Deschutes River Woods on Saturday afternoon was stopped from spreading by residents – and was started by an improperly disposed-of cigarette, investigators said.

Bend fire crews responded around 1 p.m. to the reported brushfire behind a home owned by Michelle and Michael Kellogg at 60071 Opal Lane, said Deputy Fire Marshal Dan Derlacki.

Oregon Department of Forestry and U.S. Forest Service crews also responded with brush engines to the fire, reported in brush and trees about 150 feet from homes, Derlacki said.

The owner and neighbors were able to get garden hoses to the fire quickly and keep it from spreading, he said. Crews then fully doused the blaze and kept it from spreading. Derlacki said garden sprinklers were left running on the area for the afternoon to be sure it did not reignite.

The cause of the fire was found to be a cigarette improperly disposed of into light vegetation, Derlacki said, adding that it appears the cigarette smoldered for as much as a day before igniting nearby brush and trees.

The fire "could have been easily prevented" by proper disposal of the cigarette butt into a non-combustible container.

Derlacki said no citations were issued, and the owners don't smoke.

"The area involved is open, and others can access it without the owners seeing them," he told NewsChannel 21. "We found a couple cigarette butts in the area of the fire, and nowhere else in the open area."

While it's not known who was smoking in the area, Derlacki said, "The owners will be keeping more of an eye out for anyone that shouldn't be up there."

More information about prevention cigarette caused fire, visit our Cigarette Safety
web page:

Bend Fire Department's Safety Information page on its website is a great resource
for safety topics and information ranging from cigarette fire safety to work place
safety tips.

Visit our Website anytime for great times and reminders of ways to
prevent fires and keep safe. More is being added all the time. Each of the topics has a downloadable flyer that can be used as a handout or safety poster for your home or work place.

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