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March 17, 2010
Earth Hour - using candles in the home can be a fire hazard
Torontonians will join millions of other people around the world in turning off their lights to mark Earth Hour during the evening of March 27. Toronto Fire Services reminds residents that during the lights-out hour, you should take precautions for fire safety.

In particular, consider using a battery-powered flashlight if you need light instead of using candles. Candle fires have increased dramatically over the past decade even though all other types of fires are on the decline.

Safety tips for those who choose to use candles in their homes:
- Always stay in the room where candles are burning.
- Extinguish all candles when leaving the room or going to sleep.
- Avoid using candles in bedrooms.
- Keep lit candles well away from anything that can burn.
- Keep candles, matches and lighters out of the reach of children and pets.
- Use sturdy candleholders that won’t tip or burn. (Those with glass shades/chimneys are safest).
- Extinguish candles when they burn to within five centimetres (two inches) of their holder.
- Make sure that you have working smoke alarms on every level of your home.
- Plan and practise a home escape plan in the event of fire.

For more information about other fire safety issues, see the web page at or visit your local Toronto fire station.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. Toronto has won numerous awards for quality, innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto's government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents. For information about non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Media contact:
Toronto Fire Services Media Line, 416-338-0763



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