Springfield, Mo. -- (11/21/2017) A Springfield man has died, following a smoking-related fire. On November 12th, firefighters were called to the home on the 2000 block of N. Main for a medical call.
Firefighters found 70-year-old Ray Atkinson with burns to the face from smoking while utilizing medical oxygen. Investigators say flames ignited when the heat from the lighter came into contact with oxygen-enriched air. The injury occurred several hours prior to the arrival by firefighters. Atkinson was transported to the Mercy Burn Unit, where he later died.
This marks the first fire-related fatality in Springfield in 2017. The Springfield Fire Department urges all users of medical oxygen to avoid smoking and to keep other ignition sources, such as candles, matches and wood stoves away from medical oxygen.