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Stay safe from fire while celebrating Hanukkah

Stay safe from fire while celebrating Hanukkah


Monday, 11 December 2017


December 12 marks the beginning of Hanukkah - the eight-day Jewish winter time 'festival of lights'.

Hanukkah is celebrated with the nightly lighting of the menorah (a nine-branched candelabrum lit during the celebrations), special prayers and fried foods. The festival begins on December 12 and runs until December 20.

If you are celebrating Hanukkah we hope you enjoy the festival but take care while using candles. Candles can be a common cause of fires within homes; even one candle lit unsafely can cause a big fire.

Oil fires from frying latkes (shallow-fried pancakes of grated potato, flour and egg typically enjoyed during Hanukkah) and other foods are also a potential fire risk during the holiday.

Follow these tips to prevent fires and keep you and your family safe during Hanukkah:

• Use a long-tipped lighter to keep the flame away from your fingers.

• Be mindful that most ‘arts and crafts’ Hanukkah lamps made by children are not suitable for lighting and may burn down when used. They should be used for decorative purposes only.

• Place the Hanukkah lamp on a sturdy surface made of non-flammable material such as marble, glass or metal. You can also place aluminum foil on top of a hard surface. Do not risk one unstable candle falling on to a flammable surface.

• Only place Hanukkah candles inside a menorah.

• Set unlit candles securely in place. Only keep the ‘helper’ candle out to light the other candles.

• Do not place the menorah near or under any flammable materials like curtains or books.

• Do not walk around while holding a lit candle.

• Choose a safe location for your menorah; avoid spots where something could fall on it or it could be easily knocked over.

• Keep matches and lit objects away from small children.

• Keep your menorah safely out of reach of pets and small children.

• Never leave a lit menorah unattended and remember to extinguish candles before you go to bed or leave the house.

Cooking tips

Eating oily, fried foods such as donuts, breaded chicken, and latkes is a Hanukkah tradition. If you make these foods at home you will be dealing with oil which can be a fire or burn safety hazard.

Follow these fried food safety tips to avoid a Hanukkah cooking accident:

• Ensure that your fire alarms are in working order.

• Never leave the kitchen while frying foods, and keep a close eye on the pans or fryer.

• Keep water away from the cooking area as even a small splash combined with oil can create very hot steam.

• Use vegetable, canola, corn, grape seed, safflower, or sunflower oil as they have a high smoke point.

• Do not pour huge amounts of oil in your frying pan; it is not necessary in order to make a delicious latke and oil is a fire safety hazard.

• Do not put too much food in the oil together.

• Flip latkes carefully with a slotted spatula or pancake flipper to avoid oil splashing.

• Use metal cooking tongs to flips chicken or donuts to keep your hands from touching the oil.

Most importantly of all, have a very happy Hanukkah and enjoy the celebrations!

Corporate Communications

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