They look nice and smell good, but candles have become a serious nationwide problem. While fires from other causes have dropped over the past decade, the number of candle fires continues to rise, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
Property damage is enormous, and in one recent year, 60 people died as a result of fires caused by candles. At one time, the danger was highest during the December holidays, now it spans the entire year.
In 2005, the theme of Fire Prevention Week is: Use Candles With Care.
* Place them correctly in a fire-safe holder and on a sturdy table that is not close to anything flammable.
* Never place a candle in a small enclosed area such as a bookshelf.
* Check your candles frequently to make sure they haven’t burned too low. Never leave them unattended.
* Put candles out if you are dozing in a chair.
* Don’t use candles around small children. They may be fascinated by the flame and knock the candle over.
* Avoid putting candles in the windows. If a fire starts there, it could block your exit.
* Always have a fire extinguisher available.
The National Candle Association reminds users that although a candle flame is small, it is still fire.