(PRWEB) March 22, 2009
As the days get longer and winter finally seems to be loosening its grip, Swinton is reporting an increase in home insurance claims for items damaged by candles. During January, Swinton home insurance noticed a 6% rise in claims compared to July last year.
A survey of 1,000 Swinton home insurance policy holders found that 74% of families leave lit candles lit in empty rooms, and a further 8% admitted to leaving the candles on windowsills where they could easily topple over and set fire to carpets or other soft furnishings. The risk of this is especially high when young children and pets are in the vicinity. In 2006 candles resulted in 1,554* accidental fires in the UK, causing 26 deaths and during Halloween there is a surge in candle use as people decorate their homes for spooky celebrations.
Steve Chelton, Insurer Development Manager, for Swinton home insurance said "Candles are often seen as 'harmless fun' so people become complacent about the genuine risks associated with them. At Swinton we advise everyone to be extra careful with candles, and take precautions to ensure that you do not put your family or home at risk."
Swinton offers these top five tips to reduce fire risk:
1. Once lit, do not leave candles unattended - blow candles out when leaving a room or going to bed
2. Do not permit children to keep or use candles or incense in their rooms.
3. Ensure candles are kept on steady surfaces
4. Keep candles at least three feet away from anything that could burn
5. Place candles out of reach of pets and children
*Fire Statistics issued by Communities for Local Government 2006