An elderly Alexandria woman is dead after her apartment bedroom caught fire early Sunday due to unextinguished cigarettes, fire officials said.
The woman, who has not been identified, was found dead in her bed, according to the fire department.
The woman was discovered after residents spotted smoke, pulled the fire alarm and evacuated the apartment building in the 6000 block of Edsall Road about 5:26 a.m., according to a news release from the Alexandria fire department.
Fire marshals say the blaze was probably started when the woman failed to properly extinguish cigarette butts. Her ground-level unit was enveloped in flames.
The investigation is ongoing.
Destruction to the building was limited to the victim’s unit and resulted in an estimated $225,000 in damage, authorities said. No other residents were displaced.
Acting Alexandria Fire Chief Corey Smedley warned that if people “choose to smoke, always smoke outside” and use “water on the ashes and butts to make sure they’re completely out before placing it in the proper receptacle.”