Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Candle fire leaves woman with burns

Baddow Hall Crescent, Chelmsford
22/01/2019 @ 20:24
Incident Number: 93844
In attendance: 2 x Chelmsford

A woman has been left with burns after a candle started a fire in her bedroom. 

Firefighters were called to Baddow Hall Crescent, Chelmsford, after reports of a bungalow fire.

On arrival firefighters reported that there was smoke coming from inside the property and a woman laying on the floor outside the bungalow, suffering from burns and being cared for by a neighbour.

As well as tackling the fire inside the property, crews quickly attended to the woman, giving her first aid and caring to her burns.

The fire had been caused by a candle in the bedroom, which had been knocked over by a door. 

Crew Manager Paul Mayes said:

"The homeowner had lit a candle due to an earlier power cut in the area, and when she discovered that it had been knocked over she got herself out, taking some of her belongings with her. 

"She then re-entered the property and became trapped due to the smoke, and at this point we also believe her clothing caught fire. 

"At the same time a neighbour had noticed smoke coming from the house and made their way over to the bungalow, calling out to the woman to guide her back outside and then taking care of her until we arrived.

"If it hadn't have been for the neighbour's quick thinking and brave actions there could have been a very different outcome - he saved her life.

"This incident shows why it is so important that as soon as you discover a fire you must get out, stay out and call 999.

"It's also important to use candles safely by placing them somewhere they can not fall or be knocked over.”

Crews extinguished the fire by 9.10pm. 

The whole bungalow has suffered from smoke damage and the bedroom has suffered from fire and head damage. 

The casualty was left in the care of the Ambulance Service. 


Keep you family safe by following our candle fire safety advice:

  • Make sure candles are secured in a proper holder and are away from materials that may catch fire
  • Children should not be left alone with lit candles
  • Put candles out when you leave the room, and make sure they’re put out completely at night
  • Keep the wax pool clear of wick trimmings, matches and debris at all times
  • Burn candles in a well-ventilated room, but avoid drafts, vents or air currents. This will help prevent rapid or uneven burning, sooting, and excessive dripping
  • Trim the wick to ¼ inch each time before burning. Long or crooked wicks can cause uneven burning, dripping or flaring
  • Don’t move candles once they are lit
  • Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations on burn time and proper use
  • Do not burn several candles close together as this might cause flaring
  • Use a snuffer or a spoon to put out candles. It’s safer than blowing them out when sparks can fly
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