Since January, cigarette butts in flower pots and flower beds have caused more than 125 fires in Montréal and more than a million dollars and damages. This is twice as many as in 2019, when there were only 50 such fires. And the year isn't over yet !

It’s important to be careful this year, when Montrealers are more frequently enjoying their balcony or patio because of the pandemic.

As the Service de sécurité incendie de Montréal (SIM) has explained, the material used in potting soil, such as sod or peat moss, is flammable. Putting a cigarette out in soil can easily cause a fire. 

Please note that four or five hours may pass between the time when a cigarette is put out and the first flame appears, which can then spread to a patio, a balcony or even your home. These incidents can easily be avoided, however. If you need to put out a cigarette outside, use an ashtray that is protected from the wind and that has been placed on a stable service. You can also use a jelly jar that is deep enough to fill with wet sand or water. 

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