Accidental Springfield Apartment Fire

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department

News Release 14-24
Date:  February 28, 2014

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department units responded to a garden apartment fire Thursday, February 27, 2014, at approximately 10:35 p.m., in the Springfield area of Fairfax County. The apartment building is located at 6112 Backlick Road.

Firefighters encountered heavy smoke coming from the front of a first floor stairwell upon arriving. A second fire alarm was struck bringing approximately 60 firefighters to the scene. Firefighters conducted an aggressive fire attack and brought the fire under control in approximately 25 minutes. Multiple building fire alarms sounded allowing residents to escape. Cutting the electrical power caused approximately 40 occupants to be temporarily displaced. Red Cross, Office of Emergency Management, and building management are assisting the displaced occupants. Five occupants were transported to INOVA Fairfax Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Damage is estimated at $30,000.

According to fire investigators, the fire was accidental. The fire was caused by improperly discarded smoking materials in the stairwell igniting foam carpet padding.

Discarded Smoking Materials Safety Tips

  • Completely douse butts and ashes with water before throwing them away as they can smolder and cause a fire.
  • Never smoke in bed.
  • Provide large, deep ashtrays with a center support for smokers. Check furniture for any dropped ashes before going to bed. Empty ashes into a fireproof container with water and sand.
  • Keep smoking materials away from anything that can burn (i.e., mattresses, bedding, upholstered furniture, draperies, etc.).
  • Never smoke in a home where oxygen is being used.
  • If you smoke, choose fire-safe cigarettes. They are less likely to cause fires. 
  • To prevent a deadly cigarette fire, you must be alert. You won’t be if you are sleepy, have been drinking, or have taken medicine or other drugs.
  • Keep matches and lighters up high, out of children's sight and reach.

For more information, call Daniel L. Schmidt or Captain I Randal Bittinger,
Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department, 703-246-3801 and TTY: 711.
Duty PIO (Weekends/After-hours): 703-877-3702
Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs,
services and activities. Reasonable accommodations will be provided upon request.
4100 Chain Bridge Road
Fairfax, VA 22030

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