West Jordan fire investigators have determined the blaze that heavily damaged a home Tuesday was due to an improperly extinguished cigarette.
West Jordan Battalion Chief Reed Scharman said Wednesday that a male resident had made it a practice to go outside to smoke in an area between a shed and the home's garage. When he discarded the butt of his cigarette this time, however, a rising breeze fanned the still-hot coals into a flame.
At first, the homeowner tried to put out the fire with a garden house, but the flames quickly spread first into the garage and then leaped into the house at 2818 W. Dimond Drive (7650 South).
Scharman said that by the time firefighters arrived, the garage was fully involved and smoke was pouring from both ends of the house.
Scharman said firefighters were hindered by a propane tank in the shed that was bleeding off fuel. A low-ceilinged attic on the rambler-style home also made it difficult to access flames there.
The home owner was taken to a hospital for treatment of smoke inhalation. Two small dogs and a cat were saved, Scharman said.
Two vehicles parked near the shed were damaged, and there was some damage to the siding of an adjacent home, Scharman said.
Damage was estimated at $150,000.