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Iowa Officials Blame Fire On Smoking While Using Oxygen

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    April 3, 2014 | 10:20 am
    DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) The Des Moines Fire Department says a man was injured when he lit a cigarette while using an oxygen tank, sparking a fire.

    The fire happened Saturday afternoon when the man lit a cigarette while wearing an oxygen mask.

    The man, whose name wasn't released, was able to get away and waited in a garage until firefighters arrived. Another person called 911.

    The man was taken to a Des Moines hospital and treated for minor injuries.

    Percy Coleman, of the fire department, says fires caused by smoking while on oxygen happen several times a year in Des Moines. Oxygen can greatly enhance the intensity of fires and officials recommend that people not smoke anywhere near people using oxygen.

    Spokesman Brian O'Keefe says the fire caused about $40,000 in damage.

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