Download the PDF file: Smoking

The smoking of cigarettes and the careless disposal of smoking materials is the cause of numerous house fires each year. A quarter of fire deaths across Australia each year, are caused by smoking material. A third of these preventable deaths occurred whilst smoking in bed.*

If you are a smoker or have smokers in the home, the following fire safety tips are highly recommended.

  • Always use deep, sturdy and non-combustible ashtrays.
  • Empty ashtrays frequently into an outside rubbish bin ensuring first that all cigarette butts and matches are completely extinguished.
  • Smoking, alcohol and fatigue are deadly when mixed together. Take special care if you have been drinking and smoking late at night. Before you go to bed check that no cigarette butts have lodged in the chair where you have been sitting.
  • NEVER smoke in bed.
  • NEVER leave lit cigarettes unattended.
  • Cigarette butts discarded from motor vehicles are the cause of many bushfires. Use a personal ashtray or a sealed car ashtray.
  • Never smoke near or in a confined space with flammable products, e.g. fuel, medical oxygen, aerosols, nail polishes, rubbing alcohol, and cleaning products.
  • Keep matches and lighters well out of reach of children. Storage above adult shoulder height and out of sight is recommended.

Vaping - Batteries

  • If you choose to Vape, always ensure the battery does not come into contact with metal items such as coins or keys in a pocket or bag, as this can cause them to overheat and, in some cases catch fire or explode.
  • When storing removable and spare batteries for your vape device, do so in a plastic case to prevent accidental contact. Store them out of reach of children.
  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions in regards to the best battery to use with your device.
  • Avoid using a battery from one supplier or product with a charger from another.
  • Regularly inspect your vape batteries. If your battery is damaged in any way, leaking or not functioning properly, stop using it and replace it.
  • Dispose of batteries carefully, refer to the site to find your nearest drop off centre.

Vaping - Charging

  • Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for charging your vape device. Never charge your vape with a phone, tablet or other charger.
  • Never leave the vape device on charge while you’re not present. Unplug the charging device if you leave the room, go out or go to sleep.
  • Unplug your charger once the vape device is fully charged. Don’t leave it charging for an extended period of time.
  • Charge your vape device on a clean, flat surface, away from anything that could easily catch fire, and somewhere you can clearly see it - not on a sofa or pillow where it is more prone to overheat or get switched on accidentally.

Combine the above safety tips with the installation of well-maintained, photo-electric smoke alarms in your home that are less than 10 years old. Consider having all your smoke alarms interconnected.

* Preventable Residential Fire Fatalities: July 2003 to June 2017.

For further advice:


Phone: (08) 8204 3611

Country Callers: 1300 737 637

Want more information about being safe in your apartment?

Look at our Fire in the Home Fact Sheet