Wondering why firefighters sometimes leave fires to smoulder overnight? The Huntsville Fire Department says it’s a decision made for safety reasons.

“It’s got to do with the safety of the firefighters mostly,” says Huntsville Fire Prevention Officer Mike Vadlja. “Once we’re keeping the fire controlled and there’s no risk to life or property, we will pull the firefighters out overnight and they’ll be back in the morning to continue extinguishing the hotspots.”

Hotspots are active parts of a fire that could reignite and spread. Once a fire is under control, firefighters find and extinguish remaining hotspots to prevent the fire from starting up again.

According to Vadlja, the chance of hotpots spreading at night is small.

“Overnight we have lower temperatures, higher humidity, and low wind, so the risk is greatly diminished,” says Vadlja.

Even if they might smell or see smoke at night, Vadlja assures residents that danger is low.

While smoke is not necessarily cause for concern, residents are encouraged to contact fire services if they see a fire restart.