Even though for the most part, home fires can be avoided, they are tragic events that happen all too often, leaving a family with nothing but the clothes on their back. Many fires are products of human error and engaging in known fire hazards. Being aware of the risks and how to avoid them is crucial to keeping your home safe. Read these tips and learn how to keep your family and home safe from a fire. Matches: They do have a place in a household, and that place is anywhere out of a child’s reach. Matches and lighters are fascinating to all children; especially older children who love to play with them. A single lit match dropped on the carpet or held near curtains can cause the house to go up in flames within quickly. Be sure all children, even teens respect fire’s danger and use matches and lighter sensibly. Candles: No matter how romantic they are, candles should always be used carefully; many a home fire is due to candles. Candles are not by themselves hazardous, but they can rapidly turn into a hazard. Be sure to use candles in holders that will envelope the entire candle and contain any flame. Jar candles are handy less likely to burn out of control. Most importantly, be sure to always check all of your candles before leaving the house or going to bed. A good rule of thumb is to make a quick pass through the house to blow them all out at that time. Unplug Appliances: Ever leave for work in the morning and forget to unplug the iron, hair drier, or the coffee pot? Newer models will usually have automatic shut-offs, but most of the older models don’t, and leaving them plugged in all day is a fire hazard, especially if they rest on a flammable surface. Be Fireplace Smart: Sitting in front of a warm fireplace in your home is a delightful thing, but fireplaces however should be always used wisely. Use a fire screen when there is a fire going in your fireplace., so that no loose spark will have a chance to catch your floor on fire. Secondly, always keep your damper open. This will let the smoke and fire exit through the chimney as it is designed to. You should never leave a fire unattended, so make sure the fire is completely out before you go to work or to bed.