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Smoking Causes House Fire

A basement room fire in a two-story single family home at 2113 Mason Hill Drive in Mount Vernon District Monday night was attributed to "improper disposal of smoking materials," according to investigators with the Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department.

Although firefighters brought the 10:30 p.m. blaze under control in approximately 10 minutes, it caused an estimated $110,000 in damage and resulted in one adult male being transported to Inova Mount Vernon Hospital "with non-life threatening injuries." One resident was displaced, the department reported.

Fire department spokespersons Daniel L. Schmidt and Lt. Raul G. Castillo issued a safety tips reminder when handling smoking materials:

* Never smoke in bed

* Completely douse any remaining cigarette and/or cigar butts and ashes with water before discarding them

* Provide large, deep ashtrays with a center support for smokers in the home and check for any dropped ashes where smokers have been present

* Empty ashtrays into a fireproof container with water and sand

* Keep all smoking materials away from children and anything that can burn