Careless smoking caused Jackson woman's death, officials say

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The death of Iva L. Bangert, 82, of Jackson is being attributed to careless smoking.

She died from "smoke inhalation and shock," according to Cape Girardeau County Coroner John Clifton.

"She was in her recliner and apparently had dropped a cigarette," he said Tuesday morning.

The lit cigarette started a small fire, but "the fire apparently burned itself out," according to Jackson fire chief Jason Mouser.

Bangert's body was found Monday afternoon in her home at Jackson Senior Garden Apartments, at 911 Kimbel Lane, after friends grew concerned and called the fire department.

Other tenants were unaware of a fire, Mouser said.

"It could have been bad for the people in other areas of the apartment," he said. The apartment complex has four- and six-unit buildings.

Mouser said careless smoking and electrical problems are two of the most common causes of fire.

Bangert's death is the first related to a cigarette fire since Mouser joined the department nine years ago, he said.

"We try to relay to people the importance of being careful when they're smoking. We've had a couple instances where it's been a mattress [after] people go to lay down in bed," he said.

Improperly discarded cigarettes have caused several fires in garbage cans.

"They may tap them out on something solid and then discard it in the can, but the ash is still hot," he said.


911 Kimbel Lane, Jackson 63755-2587

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