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17 May 2011, 08:39
Firefighters say a fire that caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to two houses in Cambridge is likely to have been started by a discarded cigarette.
The fire [pictured - right] broke out in a semi-detached house Ongar Court in Cambridge at around 11am yesterday.
When firefighters arrived it had spread to the roof of the neighbouring property, and also badly damaged the first floor.
It took firefighters around four hours to put the fire out.
Bruce Parcell, Station Manager for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service said: "The most likely cause of the fire is a cigarette, which may have been dropped near the house or may have been blown by the wind from elsewhere.
It is very important to dispose of cigarettes safely, particularly when the weather has been dry.
The only safe way of disposing of your smoking materials is in a bucket of water or sand, as a cigarette can start a smouldering fire in soil."