Two men die in house fire caused by discarded cigarette which set sofa alight

Two men died in a tragic house blaze after a cigarette set fire to their sofa in the middle of the night, fire bosses have revealed today.

Emergency services were called to reports of a fire on Bushbury Lane, in Oxley, Wolverhampton, at around 2am on October 25.

Two men, aged in their 40s, were pulled from the property by firefighters and despite the efforts of paramedics one victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

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The other occupant of the terraced house was rushed to Wolverhampton's New Cross Hospital but he later also passed away.

Emergency services were called to reports of a fire on Bushbury Lane, in Oxley, Wolverhampton, at around 2am on October 25.

West Midlands Fire Service said investigators believe a cigarette set fire to a sofa before the blaze tore though the property.

Pete Wilson, the service's Strategic Lead for Prevention, said: “Our thoughts are with everyone affected by this awful incident. We will be preparing a full report for Her Majesty’s Coroner, but our investigators believe that the fire started when a cigarette ignited a sofa.

“It is a stark and sobering reminder of the fire risks associated with smoking. We are urging all smokers in the West Midlands to take extra care. Fires caused by smoking materials such as cigarettes, roll-ups, cigars and lighters result in more deaths than any other type of fire.

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"In the five years to March of this year, smoking was a factor in a third of the 51 fire deaths in the communities we serve. In the same period, we recorded 613 fires related to smoking in people’s homes. That’s nearly eight per cent of all incidents to which our firefighters responded.

“Of course, we would much rather that people didn’t smoke but do appreciate that many people find it difficult to stop.

"Advice on giving up is available from the NHS and a range of other organisations, and our firefighters can share valuable safety advice in your home if you request one of our Safe and Well visits.”

Neighbours tried to save the men - understood to be a couple - after hearing shouting from the house.

Fire crews from Bilston, Dudley, Fallings Park and Wolverhampton fire stations attended the scene, and managed to rescue them despite the severity of the blaze.

West Midlands Police were also called to the scene to investigate if the fire had been started deliberately before later revealing it was not being treated as suspicious.

A force spokesperson said: "Two men have sadly died following a house fire in Bushbury Lane, Wolverhampton. One man was confirmed dead at the scene and other man passed away in hospital later.

"We've worked alongside fire service colleagues to assess the likely cause of the blaze. Following these enquiries we're not treating the fire as suspicious. We'll be preparing a full report for the coroner. Our thoughts are with those who’ve tragically lost loved ones today"