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You are here: Homepage > Press Room > Press Releases 2007 > NHC Offers Fire Safety Tips

Published 31st May 2007, 11:58am

The National Hurricane Committee is advising members of the public to avoid using open flames such as candles or kerosene lamps for lighting, in the event of a power loss. These carry a great risk of starting a fire.

It is recommended that you use flashlights as these provide the safest light. However, if you have no choice but to use open flames, follow the tips below:


  • Always place candles on fire resistant holders or in containers made for such use
  • Keep candles away from open windows and doors, curtains, paper towel holders, tablecloths etc.
  • Never leave candles unattended
  • Never allow children to play around lit candles
  • Always extinguish candles before going to sleep
  • Keep lighters and matches in a safe place and away from children.
  • Make sure matches are properly snuffed out before throwing away.

Gas stoves & gas lanterns

  • Before using, make sure anyone who will be in using the stove knows how to operate it. Read the instruction manual.

  • Never use in enclosed room; always ensure proper ventilation is available
  • To avoid the build up of gas in a gas stove or lantern always light the match or lighter and hold it to the burner before turning on the valve.
  • Never allow children to operate a gas stove
  • Keep all combustible materials such as towels, paper holders, pot holders etc, away from stove when in use.
  • Never leave a lit stove unattended.
  • Propane cylinders used for cooking must be kept outside of building. This includes the small 20-lb cylinders.
  • Always turn off cylinder after each use.

Grills and charcoal stoves

  • Keep lighter fluid away from burning coals, and other open flames.
  • Never use a grill inside the home
  • Make sure coals are properly snuffed out after each use.

Oil lamps

  • Refuel oil lamps in a ventilated area and clean up any spills before lighting.
  • Move the lamp away from the area where it was refueled.
  • Keep lamps away from any possible moving objects such as curtains, fans etc.

Fire Extinguishers

  • Always ensure that your home has adequate fire extinguishers
  • Learn how to use extinguishers before they are needed


  • Always store gasoline/petrol in proper storage containers, away from flames and outside of the home

Smoke Detectors

  • Make sure your home is equipped with at least one working smoke detector.