Early Morning House fire started by smoking while using oxygen

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – An early morning house fire sends two family members to the hospital after the fire was caused by a dangerous practice. 

CFD responded to a reported residential fire in the 700 block of Gillespie Road at 12:45 AM on Monday. 

Firefighters entered the structure from the back porch to find an elderly woman with serious injuries. 

Investigators learned that the elderly woman had been smoking while on oxygen, causing a fire. It left her with third-degree burns under her arm and down her left side. A relative also sustained burns when they rushed to put the fire out and help their injured family member. 

“Oxygen fuels fire. It is the catalyst that makes the fire grow. That’s why we have to be really careful with it. We have had countless fires over the years where people are smoking with home oxygen on and they need to understand that it’s extremely dangerous – they will get hurt and they will get burnt,” says Fire Chief Phil Hyman, Chattanooga Fire Department. 

The fire was out upon arrival with damage to a recliner and end table. 


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