Candle Fires Are on the Rise
Reported home candle fires have tripled in recent years. According to the NFPA during 2001, an estimated 18,000 home fires started by candles were reported to fire departments. These fires resulted in an estimated 190 civilian deaths, 1,450 civilian injuries and an estimated direct property loss of $265 million. In fact, two-fifths (41%) of the home candle fires start in the bedroom.
Please follow these safety tips while using candles in the home:
- Extinguish all candles when leaving the room or going to sleep.
- Keep candles away from items that can catch fire (e.g., clothing, books, paper, curtains, Christmas trees, flammable decorations, etc.).
- Use candle holders that are sturdy, won't tip over easily, are made from a material that can't burn and are large enough to collect dripping wax.
- Don't place lit candles in windows. Blinds and curtains can easily ignite.
- Place candle holders on a sturdy, uncluttered surface and do not use candles in places where they could be knocked over by children or pets.
- Keep candles and all open flames away from flammable liquids.
- Keep candle wicks trimmed to one-quarter inch and extinguish candles when they get to within two inches of the holder or decorative material. Votives and containers should be extinguished before the last half-inch of wax starts to melt.
- Avoid candles with decorative items embedded in them.
Candles & children and pets:
- Keep candles up high out of reach of children and pets.
- Never leave a child unattended in a room with a candle. A child should not sleep in a room with a lit candle.
- Do not allow children or teens to have candles in their bedrooms.
- Store candles, matches and lighters up high and out children's sight and reach, preferably in a locked cabinet.
During power outages:
- Use flashlights for emergency lighting during a power outage. Never use candles.
- Try to avoid carrying a lit candle and don't use a lit candle when searching for items in a confined space.
- Never use a candle for a light when checking pilot lights or fueling equipment such as a kerosene heater or lantern. The flame may ignite the fumes.
Remember, A candle is an open flame. It can easily ignite any combustible material nearby.