To start a fire there has to be an ignition source.
Possible sources could be faulty wires rubbing together causing friction and getting hot enough to start the fire, overloaded plugs and oil lamps etc. Some other sources could be cigarettes. They may not have been put out properly, matches and gas lighter. Another source could be computer/ other electrical items. If they are left on for a long period, they will become hot and possible trigger a fire.
Christmas lights can also play a part in a ignition of a fire because they are also normally on for a long period causing the Christmas tree to become how and burst into flames.
Items in the kitchen like ovens, kettles, chip fryers etc also have heat coming from them. If they are not working properly, they will also become a source of ignition. A drink placed near a electrical item can also start a fire. Lastly, arson could be an ignition source. If somebody wanted to have a financial gain, they could start the fire their self. Task 3 (D1)
From studying the text I was given the main causes of the fire were people smoking. Because there were rags on the floor, when the fag was dropped/ attempted to be put out, it was not fully out and was the ignition source of the fire. Another cause may have been faulty wires/cables from the sewing machines. They may have been rubbing together causing friction, eventually making it hot enough to ignite and start the fire.
Another reason may have been that the faulty cables/wires may have caused sparks which again could of caused the fire to start.
Lastly, the only other thing I could find/ think of is, back in those days there may of been candles as lights and if one was to be knocked onto the floor where the rags were this again could have caused the fire to break out. The most likely explanation to the spread of the fire is that the hanging patterns, the rags on the floor and the shirts that were already made would be everywhere around the factory meaning it would spread very quickly.
Lastly, in those day the factory may of only been small and if the fire started in a corner it would spread even quicker than it would of done if it was in the middle of the room. There are ways in which the fire could have been prevented. For example if the already make shirts were stored in a separate room, if the rags were pick up and put into a bin every time a bit was dropped or cut etc. Another way it could be prevented if people were not allowed to smoke in the work place and if the sewing machines were to be checked every so often and fixed if there were faults cables/wires.