New Canaan Fire Marshal Urges Safe Use of Candles during Holidays


New Canaan’s fire safety officials are urging town residents to keep combustible decorations—such as evergreen trees—at least 12 inches away from candles in this holiday season.

Though creating a “warm, welcoming feel” often involves use of candles in the home, it’s critical to keep safety top of mind, according to a bulletin posted Monday by Fire Marshal Fred Baker.

“If [candles are] not used safely, the most festive occasions can quickly be ruined,” Baker said.

Here’s another important reminder: “Make sure candles are out of reach of children and pets.”

What follows are Baker’s fire safety tips regarding candles:

  • Always place candles on/in noncombustible bases.
  • Ensure there is nothing directly over candles.
  • Trim candle wicks to ¼ inch each time before burning.  Long or crooked wicks cause uneven burning and dripping.
  • Always keep a burning candle within sight.  Extinguish all candles when leaving a room or before going to sleep.
  • Keep burning candles away from drafts, vents, ceiling fans or other air currents.
  • Make sure smoke and CO (carbon monoxide) detectors are properly operating

For further questions regarding this, or any other fire safety issues, please contact the New Canaan Fire Marshal’s Office at 594-3030.

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