NCA Encourages Fire Safety at Home – Especially During Storms and Loss of Power

While every October is Fire Safety Month, the National Candle Association encourages fire and candle safety all year long, especially with the increase in storms and hurricanes during this transitional season. According to the National Fire Protection Association, more than 20% of candle fires involving fatalities occur during a loss of power. To ensure that percentage decreases, we’ve compiled 7 important candle safety tips for you and your family:

  • DO use pillar or container candles. Broader-based candles are a suitable option for power outages, as these are less likely to be accidentally knocked over. When possible, candles should be enclosed within glass hurricane holders or globes.
  • DO pay attention to proximity. It’s important to make sure that you’re not burning a candle on or near anything that could catch fire. Keep candles at least 12 inches away from furniture, drapes, bedding, carpets, books, or any other flammable objects. Place burning candles at least 3 inches apart from one another so they don’t melt one another or burn improperly.
  • DON’T leave burning candles unattended. Try to restrict people and candles to one room in the house so the location of family members can always be accounted for and you can keep an eye on open flames. Extinguish all candles before going to bed or leaving a room.
  • DO place candles on a fire-resistant surface. Place a handle in its holder on a stable, nonflammable surface, such as a metal cookie sheet, frying pan or ceramic plate.
  • DON’T light a candle if you smell gas. If you smell gas inside or outside your home, immediately put out all open flames, shut off your gas supply, leave the area, get to a safe place, and call 911.
  • DON’T use candles as a search guide or night light. Avoid walking around with a candle. Dark rooms can increase the chance of tripping or brushing against a flammable item. Use a flashlight instead.  Never leave a candle burning when you are sleeping.
  • DO keep candles out of reach of children and pets. Place candles up high to avoid the risk of pets, children, or adults accidentally bumping candles over in the dark.

The next time inclement weather strikes this fall or winter, don’t be afraid to grab for a candle as a source of needed light, just remember to light it safely. For a complete list of tips for safe candle use, check out NCA’s Candle Safety Rules. To learn more about fire safety, visit NCA’s Fire Safety Guidelines.