We’ve all seen these people. dying of some lung disease or other but still they ain’t going to give up their true love of smoking.

A 61-year-old North Carolina woman was killed when she smoked while hooked up to an oxygen tank, according to a report.

Belinda Coble was smoking a cigarette around 8 a.m. Tuesday as oxygen was being administered at her home in Zebulon, 20 miles northeast of Raleigh, news station WNCN reported.

The cigarette caused her oxygen tank to ignite, which resulted in an explosion, authorities said. Yea. my Dad was on oxygen the last few years before he died. And there was a no smoking and flammable sign stuck all over everything. Who knew flames and oxygen aren’t a good mix?

Her husband was asleep when the incident occurred, but called 911 when the blast and smoke alarm woke him, the outlet reported. He then attempted to put out the fire.

Coble was pronounced dead when authorities arrived, WNCN reported

Hey, at least she died doing what she loved. Killing herself by smoking.


  1. Cigarettes are more addictive than crack cocaine.
    And they still kill or cripple a shitload of Americans.
    No medical uses.
    A class one drug if there ever was one.
    And it’s legal in every State.

    Why anyone needs more evidence that America’s Drug laws are about profit and social control is beyond me.

  2. One of the drug and alcohol counselors we used to have at Fort Lewis was a Vietnam veteran who’d managed to get himself hooked on about everything, multiple times. When he eventually came out of his drug-induced haze circa 1980-ish, he went into drug abuse counseling, ‘cos that’s what he knew best.

    In any event, a guy who’d been hooked on heroin multiple times, along with meth, coke, hash, and God alone knows what else…? It was his claim that the hardest thing for him to quit, out of all of them, was cigarettes. For him, at least, the nicotine and the rest of the social rituals around cigarettes and smoking were the most challenging things he ever encountered, in terms of what it took to get off them and stay off them. It was also his contention that the biggest issues weren’t the ones from the nicotine’s pharmacological effect, but the social stuff like having a smoke break or smoking after sex.

    Interesting perspective, and something that’s stuck with me. It’s not just the drug itself, or what it does in your body, but the whole surrounding set of circumstances that make it so insidious.

    • It always pissed me off at my old jobs that guys could be standing around doing nothing but smoking and the boss would pull me or some one else off another job or add something to a work load. and when you said ” get goldbrick to do it” it was always ” he’s smoking right now” If anyone else who didn’t smoke just stopped working for 15 minutes to lean against the wall they would have a shit fit though. It’s always irked me how smokers and people with kids got away with a lot more of skipping out early or just lollygagging.I saw some news story the other day about companies considering giving a couple extra days off a year to non smokers to make up for all the “smoke break” time they don’t get during a day.

    • I have heard the same thing about cigarettes being harder to quit than heroin. And likewise that the hard part is fighting the triggers: cigarette after wake up, etc. I imagine it’s a lot easier to avoid situations that make you want to shoot up than it is to avoid situations that make you want to smoke.

      One friend once told me that he didn’t drink coffee for years after quitting smoking. He couldn’t imagine enjoying a cup of coffee without a cigarette.

  3. The oxygen tank didn’t blow up from her cigarette – it blew up because of the fire around it.

    Taking off my gunsmith hat for a sec and talking as a firefighter: Here’s the thing that lots of people miss about oxygen therapy in the home from O2 tanks (as opposed to concentrators):

    All that O2 that the patient didn’t inhale and use goes somewhere – ie, the room around them. So, let’s say (for discussion) that she’s on, oh, 3 to 4 LPM via a cannula. She gets the benefit of perhaps a quarter to a half of that O2 being metered out for her. The rest of the O2 just goes into the room around her, creating an oxygen-rich bubble around her. O2 is slightly (ever so slightly) denser than atmospheric air, so the O2 will settle (eventually) to low spots.

    So, from a firefighting perspective, what does this mean? It means the area directly around her bed can become very rich in O2, meaning that any ignition of flammable substances in that bubble will result in a sudden conflagration that will burn much, much faster than people are used to.

    Now, let’s assume that her O2 bottle is in this environment that is burning intensely around her, and you get a case of a 2300 PSI O2 tank (if it was a new bottle) being heated rapidly, meaning the pressure is going to go up rapidly, and the regulator will probably fail, and lots of O2 comes flying out of that bottle in a hell of a hurry, which just makes everything burn so much faster and hotter.

    This is one of the reasons why O2 concentrators are a bit safer: they don’t bring in a quantity of pure O2 into your home; they just concentrate your normal air into O2 that is piped to the patient – but there’s no “new” O2 in the environment.


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