This past weekend I performed an oil change shop. In the guidelines, it stated to watch my car being serviced and I couldn't see from the inside so I stood outside the bay to watch them work on my car. As I was watching, I noticed an older employee smoking while changing another car's oil and then throw the lit cigarette into a plastic oil drum turned trash can that was filled with those paper floor mats.
Honestly, I don't know enough about cars to know how many things under the hood are flammable but I do know that paper is flammable and if the trash can next to the cars caught on fire, it wouldn't be pretty.
Anyway, I really felt like this was something that I needed to report but there was nowhere in the report to add this, I just kind of added an aside in one of the comments section and hoped for the best. In a situation like this, should I have contacted anyone else? Did I overreact?
You did not overreact. I would have been tempted to take a quick photo of the area with my cell phone. I would have been tempted to tell the store manager. Safety is safety, and it could easily have been your car that got burned up if a fire resulted from this stupid action.
Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
Possible over reaction. On the other hand, the Clean Air act in may places expands to cover garages and service bays. Generally if you look around you will see "No Smoking" signs and thus reporting smoking while working on the vehicles would be appropriate. On the other hand I have seen mechanics so accustomed to having a cigarette between their lips while they work that they will have an unlit one or one that they smoked outside until it went out still between their lips. So if there was a "No Smoking" sign and I was absolutely sure that it was still lit when it went into the can, I would mention it. Failing that, I would not report it.