State fire marshal offers advice for Halloween safety

October 30, 2012

By Staff

NEW — 1 p.m. Oct. 30, 2012

Halloween frights can come from flammable costumes and decorations, state Fire Marshal Charles Duffy cautioned residents as the holiday approached.

The state fire marshal reminded parents to plan ahead for little ghouls’ safety and to make Halloween a fire-safe holiday.

“Taking simple fire safety precautions, like making sure fabrics for costumes and decorative materials are flame-resistant, can prevent fires,” Duffy said in a statement.

Revelers can practice some simple tips to remain safe on the holiday.

Safety can start at the store, as parents and children select a costume.

The fire marshal recommends purchasing only costumes, wigs and props labeled as flame-resistant or flame-retardant.

When creating a costume, choose material that does not easily ignite if it comes into contact with heat or flame.

Some Halloween decorations — such as dried flowers, cornstalks and crepe paper — are highly flammable. Keep these and other decorations well away from all open flames and heat sources. Also, remember to keep exits clear of decorations, ensuring that nothing blocks escape routes.

Use flashlights or battery-operated candles as alternatives to candles or torchlights when decorating. Use extreme caution when decorating with candlelit jack-o’-lanterns, and supervise children at all times when candles are lit.

Instruct children to stay away from open flames or other heat sources. Be sure children know to stop, drop and roll in the event that their clothing catches fire.

Provide children with lightweight flashlights or glowsticks to carry for lighting or as part of their costumes.

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