The holidays are often known as the time of year when Fire Departments see a surge in house fires. "There's no such thing as a perfectly safe candle," says Jim Shannon of the National Fire Prevention Association. "The most recent statistics we have, for one year: about 190 people killed from candle fires in the United States, and almost 1,500 injured."
Those statistics also show that, in one year alone, the number of candle fires rose 15 percent, and nearly 5 percent of home fires were started by candles. Compare that to the early '80's, when only around 1 percent of house fires were caused by candles.
Why the increase? Experts say it's the jump in popularity of candles.
"In the last 10 years, the increase in candle sales have soared to at least 700%," notes Valerie Cooper, executive vice president of the National Candle Association. "We believe that 80 percent of all candle fires can be eliminated by three basic safety precautions: Never leave a candle burning unattended, keep burning candles away from things that can catch fire, and keep candles away from children and pets."
At By the Bay Botanicals, we want to add that if candle lovers only used a little bit of common sense, nearly all fires resulting from candles can be completely avoided. We've experienced customers at shows we attend have a lapse in judgement when it comes to seeing a burning candle. Despite signs stating, "Lit HOT candle, do not pick up to smell", customers pick up the candle to smell and quickly put it down. This is something we could see happen in the home where you see a candle burning for quite a while and without thinking, pick it up to blow it out, forgetting the glass container the candle is in is hot, and it gets knocked over possibly causing a fire or spilled wax ruining furniture. This is why when we do art fairs we actually do not have lit candles on display, yet have ones that we have burned to show customers how they look burned compared to other brands that too have been burned.
The use battery operated candles are very safe and rising in popularity too due to some not wanting to risk causing a house fire. These are ideal for those who want to use them around kids and pets or around the holidays, but you loose the allure that real candles can offer. Battery operated lights do give off light, but do not give off heat, rarely scented, and the cost of battery operated lights are a little more expensive and you do have to replace the battery frequently. All things to consider when making a candle purchase.
So this holiday season, here at By the Bay Botanicals we want to challenge you to read and take the safety instructions on the candles you burn and receive as gifts seriously. If you don't, you are putting your whole family at risk in loosing your home sweet home.
Read this article on how one family's harrowing tale of how their house caught on fire, the after effects from that fire, and what they hope all who read can learn from their mistake.
(some of the statistics used in this blog post come from this article)
- Michelle Sholund, owner
By the Bay Botanicals
I am the owner of By the Bay Botanicals. We want to stay connected to you, and through this blog we aim to share with you tips and tricks to buying and burning candles as well as read up on what goes on behind the scenes at By the Bay Botanicals. Feel free to comment, and comment often as well as share with your friends and family.
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