Thursday, May 26, 2016

Campfire Safety Tips

Around a holiday weekend, many people are looking forward to heading to their favorite camping spot or to a cabin somewhere. A favorite pastime during these trips is starting a campfire, roasting some marshmallows, cooking a hot dog and enjoying the company. Campfires are not without their dangers and we must also take a minute to think safety. Here are some tips from your Bellevue Fire Department on enjoying your campfire safely:
  1. If there is not an existing fire pit, and pits are allowed, look for a site that is at least fifteen feet away from tent walls, shrubs, trees or other flammable objects. Also beware of low-hanging branches overhead.
  2.  Use dry twigs and small sticks to build the fire. Once the fire begins to build up add larger wood as needed. Never use an accelerant, such as gasoline, to start the fire. This is dangerous and can lead to injuries and/or fires outside your intended area.
  3. Keep the fire small. Small fires can provide plenty of heat for cooking and keeping you warm. A large fire can quickly get out of control.
  4. Never leave a campfire unattended. Even a small breeze can blow hot debris outside of the fire pit and can quickly spread out of control.
  5. Keep a “circle of safety” around the campfire. This area should be about 4 feet around the campfire and children should not be allowed inside the “circle of safety”. Take a minute to explain to the children that fire is dangerous and the campfire area is not a playground.
  6. Make sure to always have water and a shovel handy in case you need to quickly extinguish the fire.
  7. When it is time to end the campfire fun make sure to apply enough water so that the entire pit and its contents are cool. Smokey Bear says “If it is too hot to touch it is too hot to leave”.
  8. ENJOY!
For more information on campfire safety please see the Smokey Bear's Campfire Safety Guide below and the Campfire Safety website. Thank you and make it a safe day! Remember, “Only you can prevent forest fires!”