Warning over candle dangers after Howey property fire

A fire service has issued a warning about the dangers of leaving candles unattended following a property fire near Llandrindod Wells.

Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service said it was called to a fire at house in Howey at 10.20pm on Tuesday, February 9.

Candles had set fire to the curtains on the first floor flat, which then filled the property with heavy smoke, the fire service said.

A man and woman were taken to Hereford County Hospital by ambulance, and two cats were given life-saving oxygen after becoming exposed to smoke from the fire.


Station Manager Neil Evans said, “During lockdown, and with Valentine’s Day fast approaching, candles are a typical sight in many homes, scenting our rooms and giving an atmospheric warmth and glow to cold winter nights. But it’s important to remember that a candle is not just a decorative feature. Left unattended, an open flame could start a devastating fire.

“Thankfully, there were working smoke alarms fitted within the property that alerted the occupiers to the fire and allowed them to call 999. This incident again shows the importance of testing your smoke alarm regularly and practising your escape routes.”

How to enjoy candles safely

  • Never leave lit candles unattended. Put burning candles out when you leave the room, and make sure they’re out completely at night.
  • Place your candles carefully. Make sure they are on a stable surface, out of the reach of pets and children, and keep them away from flammable objects like curtains, furniture, bedding and books.
  • Do not move candles once they are lit.
  • Do not burn several candles close together as this might cause the flame to flare.
  • Burn candles in a well-ventilated room, out of drafts, vents or air currents. This will help prevent rapid or uneven burning, soot, and dripping.
  • Put candles out with a snuffer or a spoon – sparks can fly if you blow them out.
  • Always put scented candles in a heat resistant holder. These candles are designed to liquefy when heated to maximise fragrance.
  • Fit a smoke alarm and test it regularly. A working smoke alarm can buy you valuable time to get out, stay out and call 999.
  • Make sure that everyone in your home knows what to do if a fire should occur– practise your escape route.

For further Home Fire Safety advice or to talk about the possibility of a Safe and Well Visit by Fire and Rescue Service personnel, please phone 0800 169 1234.​​​ Alternatively please complete an online Request a Safe and Well Visit​ form on the Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service website.

County Times | Llandrindod Wells & Rhayader