Residents living in Inyo, Mono, and San Bernardino counties interested in a fire prevention program email

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Don’t let candles destroy your holidays!

The Christmas tree is set up and decorated, you’ve checked the lights and they are all safe. And now, we have put out those wonderful smelling holiday candles all over the house. The CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit wants to remind you to be very safe about using those candles. They can quickly transition from joy to tragedy if you are not careful. According to the U. S. Fire Administration, the majority of candle fires result from human error and negligence. On average 42 home candle fires are reported across the nation every day. That means that more than 15,000 homes in the United States will be damaged every year from a candle caused fire. More importantly, is the human tragedy, with an estimated 166 people killed and over 1,200 people injured from these fires. CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit Chief Tim McClelland says “candles can be very dangerous and you need to be extra careful when using them.”

The U. S. Fire Administration reports that 55% of candle fires begin because the candle is placed too close to an ignition source such as paper or cloth. Twenty percent (20%) of candle fires begin when candles are left unattended or abandoned. Most importantly, one half of all candle related fire deaths occur between midnight and 6:00 A.M.

The CAL FIRE San Bernardino Unit and the U. S. Fire Administration has these safety tips for enjoying your holiday candles;
· If possible, avoid using lighted candles.
· If you must use candles, ensure that they are placed in sturdy holders.
· Keep candles away from children and pets.
· Be sure to extinguish candles after each use.
· Never leave burning candles unattended.
· Never put burning candles on or near your Christmas tree.

For more Holiday safety tips you can call your local fire department or visit CAL FIRE on the web at