With its spooky decorations, colorful costumes and sugar rush of candy-coated treats, Halloween is supposed to be a fun holiday.
However, along with all this excitement comes potential fire hazards related to seasonal decor and costumes. According to the National Fire Protection Association, from 2011-2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 840 home structure fires per year that began with decorations. These fires caused an average of 2 civilian deaths, 36 civilian injuries, and $11.4 million in direct property damage, per year. Fire can start when candles are too close to decorations or when long, trailing costumes come into contact with candles.
The Skippack Fire Company offers the following safety guidelines to help guarantee that your home and family avoid Halloween fire hazards.
Refrain from having an open flame.
Use battery-operated candles or glow-sticks in your jack-o-lanterns.
Choose the right costume. Try to stay away from long or flowing fabric, and remain vigilant of extraneous costume pieces.
Avoid flammable decorations including dried flowers, cornstalks and crepe paper that are highly flammable.
Keep decorations away from open flames and other heat sources, including light bulbs and heaters.
Remember to keep all decorations away from doors so that they are not blocking any exits or escape routes.
Make sure all of your smoke alarms are working and up to date.
Provide flashlights to children or have children carry glow sticks as part of their costumes.
Make sure if a child is wearing a mask that the eye holes are large enough so he or she can see out of them.