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Honolulu Fire Department warns of candle fire risks as Valentine’s Day approaches

With the arrival of Valentine’s Day on Friday, the Honolulu Fire Department is reminding the public to follow candle safety tips to prevent accidental fires.

Nationally, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 7,900 home structure fires started by candles between 2013 and 2017, according to the National Fire Protection Association.

Candle-related fires caused a yearly average of 80 civilian fire deaths and 720 civilian fire injuries. Three out of every five home candle fires occurred when candles were placed too close to combustible material. More than a third started in the bedroom.

HFD recommends taking these five preventative steps to avoid candle fires:

>> Never leave a burning candle unattended.

>> Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything combustible.

>> Blow out all candles before you leave a room or go to bed.

>> If a candle must burn continuously, be sure it is enclosed in a glass container, placed in a sink, on a metal tray or in a deep basin filled with water.

>> Burning hand-held candles should not be passed from one person to another at any time.

>> Never leave children alone in a room with a burning candle.

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