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Fire brigade warns about Christmas candle use

PUBLISHED: 16:02 05 December 2014

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It says the public should take care when lighting candles

London Fire Brigade is warning the public to take care this festive season after new figures show blazes started by candles increase by a massive 38 per cent between November and January.

Between February and October, there are an average of 21 candle fires a month. This number rises dramatically to 29 fires a month during November, December and January.

Candles are one of the biggest causes of fires in the home. During 2013 and 2014 six people died, with 61 others injured in fires started by candles.

The brigade are now warning that people using tea lights as part of their Christmas decorations could be putting themselves and their families at risk if they don’t follow the brigade’s advice.

The fire brigade says that candles should always be put in a fire resistant candleholder, always be placed on a heat resistant surface and should always be kepy away from anything flammable, including curtains and Christmas trees.

Community safety group manager, Mark Hazelton, said: “At this time of year many people will be lighting candles as part of their festive decorations but if you don’t use them safely it could spell disaster for you and your family.

“You should always make sure candles are placed in a proper holder on an even, heat resistant surface and that they are kept well away from anything that could catch fire like clothing or curtains. Mixing candles and too much alcohol can also be catastrophic so don’t use them if you’ve had a lot to drink.”

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