Don’t Let A Candle Ruin Your Holiday Cheer

Candle Safety pictureEveryone enjoys the coziness and aroma of a candle burning during the cold weather months. December is the peak time of year for candle fires according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). At Texas Tech, it is important to note that open burning indoors, such as the lighting of candles or incense, is prohibited. Open burning consists of any type of open/exposed flame that can activate fire alarm detection/suppression systems or cause a fire. For more information on campus fire safety procedures, you can download the TTU Fire and Life Safety Program Manual.

Further, Texas Tech residence hall policies state that possession of any source of open flame, candle warmers, candles or incense (lit or unlit), is in violation of the Fire Safety Policy.

According to the United States Fire Association (USFA), it is estimated that 3,800 university housing fires occur each year in the United States. In order to keep Texas Tech residents safe, each residence hall is equipped with fire alarm systems. Drills are performed three times each semester so that residents are familiar with how to exit the building properly.

According to the USFA, an average of 42 home candle fires are reported every day. Although open flames are not allowed on campus, we would like to go over some proper candle safety procedures to help you stay safe if you live off-campus.

Safety tips from the NFPA:

  • If you burn candles, be sure to use candleholders that are sturdy, and place them on a solid surface that is uncluttered.
  • The candle should be kept at least 12 inches away from anything that can burn.
  • Light candles carefully, keeping hair and any loose clothing away from the flame.
  • Don’t burn a candle all the way down—put it out before it gets too close to the holder or container.
  • Blow out all candles when you leave the room or go to bed. Avoid use of candles in the bedroom and other areas where people may fall asleep.

These are just some of the many safety tips that the NFPA has provided in reference to candle safety tips.

Thank you for visiting Safety@TTU. Please send any questions or feedback to

This information is not exhaustive and should not be construed as containing all the necessary compliance, safety, or warning information available. Please make sure you consult with EH&S or appropriate supervisors for all safety information and procedures.

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