The Coquitlam fire department is warning the public about the dangers of having smoking materials around children, following a fire that damaged a home earlier this week.
Investigators have determined a fire at a Glen Drive home Tuesday morning was started accidentally, potentially by a young child with access to a lighter or matches.
"Young children should be kept apart from smoking material, especially matches and lighters so there is less chance of any type of accidental fire start," said Coquitlam Fire & Rescue chief Tony Delmonico.
He noted the department deals with fires accidentally started by children on occasion.
"It is concerning to us," Delmonico said, noting the department, along with the City of Coquitlam, is actively involved in public education campaigns geared toward small children.
He said parts of the education programs involve teaching children to turn in any lighters or matches they find to a parent or teacher.
Firefighters were called to the single-family home on Glen Drive just before 11 a.m., after a blaze broke out in a bedroom.
Crews managed to put the fire out quickly, limiting the flames to just one room.
A family of four, who were renting the roughly 30year-old home, was inside at the time, but they got out uninjured.
Paramedics at the scene checked out the family as a precaution.
The damage to the home is estimated to be $25,000.
It could be weeks before the family is allowed to return.
Delmonico suggested the outcome of the fire could have been far worse had it been at night.
"It's never a good thing for a family to have to deal with, but it's probably the best outcome of a fire," he said.