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Witnesses: Discarded cigarette started fire

Posted at 5:48 PM, Jan 14, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-14 18:48:56-05

An Omaha police officer's quick actions stopped a fire in the street from spreading after witnesses claim it was started by a discarded cigarette from a passing car.

It happened Wednesday around 11 p.m. on 10th Street, near Howard Street.

Police say witnesses told them they saw someone throw a cigarette from a moving vehicle, lighting a gas or oil slick on the street on fire and damaging a nearby car.

That's when Officer Justin Knapp, who happened to be driving down the street, put the flames out with his fire extinguisher.

"All of this could have been prevented had the litterer used that little built in device in their car," the Omaha Police Department said in a post on Facebook.

No one was injured by the fire.

A bystander posted a video of the incident and the officer's quick response on YouTube. You can watch it here.