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Our mission is to reduce the number of injuries and deaths due to injuries, 
through prevention, improved trauma care, and improved rehabilitation.


"Tortured cries broke the silence yesterday in a Harlem church where hundreds mourned a
family - including three children - killed in a blaze last week...Fire officials said a cigarette ignited the blaze."
--"Tears From Mom, Tots Killed in Brooklyn Fire" NY Post, 03/13/02



Burning Down the House --Cigarette Manufacturers Choose Profits Over Safety 

Cigarette-ignited fires are the leading cause of fire deaths in the United
States.  Approximately 1,000 children, adults, and elders are killed annually due to cigarette ignited fires and an additional 3,000 are burn injured.

Numerous tobacco industry documents which have recently seen the light of day reveal what some fire-safe cigarette advocates have long suspected--the tobacco industry put the lid on fire-safe cigarettes over fears that producing and marketing such a cigarette would be tantamount to admitting responsibility for all the deaths and injuries caused by cigarette-ignited fires.  The cigarette companies let their legal departments dictate that research to produce a consumer acceptable fire-safe cigarette should not be pursued.

An October 27, 1983 British American Tobacco (BAT) Company research
document reveals that cigarette paper manufacturer Ecusta and Schweitzer, "have become active again, and have given B&W (Brown & Williamson) samples of a high based weight paper with a self burn additive that causes cigarettes to extinguish if laid flat on an item of furniture...It was said that this development has not been fully exposed within Kimberly-Clarke, nor with Du Mauduit in France.  In view, however, of their recent decision taken [sic] by the Tobacco Institute not to work actively in the development of self-extinguishing cigarettes (for product liability reasons) it will be necessary for B&W management to define its wishes before GR&DC (BAT's Group Research and Development Centre) is asked to undertake any work." [emphasis added]

Once again, the tobacco industry has chosen profits over human lives.
When the technology exists to prevent cigarette-ignited fires and save
human lives, there is no excuse for the industry's immoral and
murderous behavior.

If you wish to help in this advocacy effort, contact us at for a copy of a Model Fire Safe Cigarette Bill that can be introduced in your state legislature. In addition, we will report on the introduction of federal legislation in the near future. The federal bills will be authored by Senator Durbin (IL) and Congressman Markey (MA).

The Trauma Foundation has led a twenty-three year effort to reduce
cigarette-ignited fires by advocating for fire safety standards for
cigarettes. In 2000, two groundbreaking events occurred in this area --
New York State passed the nation's first law requiring the establishment
of a fire safety standard for cigarettes sold in the state (to take effect on July 1, 2003), and Philip Morris began the mass production of a cigarette (its Merit brand) that is significantly less likely than conventional cigarettes to ignite furniture or bedding.