Making sure the fireworks and candle safety messages hit home

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Latest advice from the fire service for the folk of Ilkeston from Gary Platts, starting with a quiz.

1. You should never leave a candle burning unattended TRUE/FALSE

2. You should always have a bucket of water or a hosepipe on hand if having a bonfire party at home TRUE/FALSE

3. You should trim candlewicks before burning them TRUE/FALSE

4. You can find more information about keeping safe at www.derbys-fire.gov.uk TRUE/FALSE

Although I spoke to you last month about keeping safe on Bonfire Night, I feel that with many of you planning to celebrate this weekend, a few more words of safety advice and information wouldn’t go amiss.

Remember, it is much safer to attend an organised display. Less cost, less hassle and most importantly, SAFE. If you do decide to hold a bonfire party at home, please follow these top tips:

• Always place your bonfire away from the house, trees, shrubs and shed.

• Keep a bucket of water or hose pipe on standby

• Keep fireworks in a closed metal box

• Appoint an adult to oversee the lighting of all fireworks

• Always light fireworks at arm’s length, and use the taper provided

• Follow the instructions on each firework

• Never go near a firework that has been lit. Even if it hasn’t gone off, it could still explode

• Never put fireworks in your pocket or throw them

• Only buy fireworks marked BS 7114. You can find much more information and advice about bonfire safety by visiting our website www.derbys-fire.gov.uk

As soon as Bonfire Night is over, thoughts soon turn to Christmas. Once again our homes will be bedecked with all manner of Christmas decorations.

The soft glow of a candle, whilst lovely at Christmas, is something that many of us have in our homes throughout the year. Candles always seem to be a sign of a celebration, in fact I am sure many of you even took part in a bit of pumpkin carving this Halloween!

So it seems fitting to talk a little about candle safety.

Here are my top tips for candle safety:

• Never leave a burning candle unattended

• Make sure candles are placed in a holder that is non-flammable, prevents the candle from falling over and is big enough for the size of candle you are using.

• Ensure candles are out of reach from pets and children

• Trim candlewicks to 1/4 inch each time before burning. Long or crooked wicks cause flickering, sooting and dripping.

• Don’t burn a candle all the way down. Extinguish the flame if it comes too close to the holder or container.

• Always burn candles in a well-ventilated room but away from drafts, vents and air currents which may cause rapid flame flare-ups or blow lightweight curtains or papers into the flame.

• Use a snuffer or a spoon to put out candles. It’s safer than blowing them out when sparks and hot wax can fly.

Until next month, when dare I say it, Christmas will be nearly upon us.