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At approximately 9:30 AM on Sunday, April 28, 2019, the Central Dakota Communications Center received a report of smoke in an apartment building on the 1800 block of East Capital Avenue. The Bismarck Fire Department was dispatched to investigate. The first arriving fire crew reported a three story apartment building with nothing showing from the outside, the fire crew established command, and went in to investigate. The fire crew found a smell of smoke on the second floor of the building. They identified the apartment where the smoke was coming from and went in. The fire crew found a fire on the outside balcony of the apartment. The fire involved the decking and the building siding, extending up and down the exterior wall. Firefighters extinguished the fire with a hand held fire extinguisher. Additional fire units arrived and assisted with fire attack, extinguishment, evacuating the building, and ventilation. The fire crews conducted a salvage and overhaul operation to find and extinguish any remaining smoldering materials. When the overhaul operation was complete the building was ventilated, then it was handed over to the building management.
Six fire department apparatus and 15 firefighters were dispatched to the scene. Bismarck Police Department assisted with scene control. Metro Area Ambulance was on scene to provide assistance. The apartment building was occupied at time of the fire and the occupant of the affected apartment was not displaced. The fire was contained to the exterior walls and balcony with extension into the wood wall, but not to the interior of the structure. There was smoke damage to second and third floor apartments. The cause of the fire was attributed to the improper disposal of smoking materials.
By following a few simple safety tips people can limit the risk of smoking related fires in the home.
• Fully extinguish all smoking materials, every time.• Pinch it, before you pitch it. Make sure butts are cool to the touch before discarding.• Do not dispose butts into planters or flower pots. Potting mix often contains combustible material that can smolder and ignite.• Never use a plastic container for butts. Use only approved non-combustible containers to dispose of smoking materials.For more information contact the Bismarck Fire Department at (701) 355-1400 or https://www.bismarcknd.gov/19/Fire.