Chanukah Safety Tips From The Lakewood Fire Department

As the Festival of Lights, Chanukah, is approaching, the Lakewood Board of Fire Commissioners, in partnership with Fire Chief Jonathan Yahr, Fire Prevention Specialist Sima Clapman and the Lakewood Fire Department, is emphasizing the importance of fire safety to ensure a safe and joyous celebration for the community.

Celebrating Chanukah involves the beautiful tradition of lighting the menorah, enjoying festive meals, and spending time with loved ones. However, it’s essential to be mindful of fire safety practices to prevent accidents. The Lakewood Fire Department offers the following safety tips for a fire-smart Chanukah:

Menorah Placement:
– Place Chanukah Menorahs on sturdy, nonflammable surfaces, keeping them at least three feet away from flammable materials.
– Avoid placing lit candles in windows or near exits, ensuring a clear escape route if needed.
– Never leave a lit Chanukah lamp unattended, and keep matches, lighters, and lit objects out of reach of children.

Cooking Safety:
– When cooking, roll up sleeves and avoid loose-fitting clothing that can easily catch fire.
– Keep flammable items, such as dish towels, bags, and curtains, at least three feet away from the range top.
– Turn pot handles inward to prevent young children from pulling down a hot pan.
– Stay in the kitchen and monitor the stove or oven to prevent unattended cooking, a leading cause of home fires.

Frying Precautions:
– Utilize back burners to keep hot surfaces out of reach of children.
Keep children away from the stove and other
cooking elements while frying.
– Exercise caution when reheating fried foods, as hot oil can cause severe burns.
– In the event of a grease fire, smother flames with a lid if possible; do not use water and call 911 immediately.

Appliance Safety:
– Keep all appliances away from the counter’s edge, especially when children are present.
– Ensure adequate space around appliances for air circulation and to minimize heat buildup.
– Verify that appliances are U.L. compliant and in optimal condition.
– Use U.L. approved heavy-duty timers for appliances and consult with a religious authority for Halachic clarification on timer use on Shabbos.

Emergency Response:
NEVER hesitate to call the fire department for
any suspicion of danger.

– Fire Department Chaplain Rabbi Moshe Rotberg (with direction from other various local rabbinical authority) would like to remind the community, since it is impossible for the typical layman to determine from the time of the crisis if it poses a danger to oneself or neighbors. One should not hesitate to call the Fire Department immediately. What may appear to the uneducated to be “nothing” may, in fact, be deadly.
– Ensure working smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are installed in your home, with alarms outside each sleeping area and on every floor.

Fire Chief Jonathan Yahr encourages the community to embrace fire safety practices during Chanukah, stating, “By following these safety tips, we can celebrate Chanukah with joy and peace of mind. Our goal is to ensure the safety and well-being of all residents during this special time.”

The Lakewood Fire Department encourages all residents and visitors to prioritize safety during Chanukah and make it a tradition to practice fire safety. By taking these
precautions, we can all contribute to a safer and happier holiday season.

For more information and additional fire
safety resources, please visit our website at or contact the
Lakewood Fire Department at (732) 364-5151.

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