A man is dead following a fatal fire in Gwynn Oak due to improperly discarded smoking materials, according to fire officials.

For more than decade, Corran Jones and his family have lived in this quiet neighborhood along Langford Road in Gwynn Oak. So, waking up on the Fourth of July to a line of fire trucks down the street was a surprise.

“My wife had called me and told me it was smoke and there was fire going on. And she told me it wasn’t our house,” Jones said.

Video from nearby neighbors show a portion of the road blocked as firefighters worked to put out the flames.

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According to the Baltimore County Fire Department, just after 11:36 a.m. Wednesday, responders were called to the 1500 block of Langford Road after neighbors saw flames and smelled smoke coming from the second floor of a home.

“They located a male victim on the second floor of the home. They quickly rescued him and transferred him to care for EMS providers. He was in cardiac arrest at the time,” said Lt. Twana Allen of the Baltimore County Fire Department.

The victim was taken to the hospital for more treatment, but later died from his injuries.

Fire crews did identify the victim as 58-year-old Michael James Smith, but his neighbors knew him simply as “Mr. Mike.”

“Me and him had talked a few times. He was a veteran. I’m a veteran and you know, I noticed that he had some issues as far as his illness,” Jones said. “I always made sure his grass was cut.”

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Fire investigators did confirm the fire was an accident caused by improperly discarded smoking materials.

“It is best to smoke outside, you know when feasible and to make sure that you fully extinguish your smoking materials with an ashtray or a noncombustible bucket full of sands,” Allen said. “Make sure you’re not smoking while taking medication — if you’re impaired and additionally, if you’re tired.”

“It could have been you know, moved into my house, next door and my family was home that time of night,” Jones said. “We were asleep. It could have been real tragic, real tragic.”