In Case of Fire—DOs
• Do put out the fire as quickly as possible. It is vital to put it out before it spreads. If you cannot get it under control, evacuate and call the fire department.
• Do shut off the heat source and remove the melting pot to another area to cool.
• Do make sure the fire is completely extinguished.
• Do ventilate the area—open windows, doors, etc.
• Do leave the area until the smoke and fumes dissipate. Overheating wax produces fumes that are unhealthy to breathe.
In Case of Fire—DON’Ts
• Don’t panic—keep calm.
• Don’t put water on a wax fire.
• Don’t breathe the fumes and smoke any longer than necessary to follow the steps above.
Fire Control Equipment
Fire Extinguisher. A fire extinguisher is the most important piece of equipment a candle maker can own. Purchase a decent size ABC-type dry chemical fire extinguisher before you make any candles. Your extinguisher should be mounted outside of the wax melting area, yet still close enough to grab fast. Read the instructions on the extinguisher before making your first candles. You will not have time to read them if you have a fire.
Pot Lid. The lid from a cooking pot is also a handy piece of equipment to have. If you have a small wax fire that is confined to the pot, just place the lid on the pot to smother the flame. Although it is not a substitute for a fire extinguisher, this technique is very effective on small melting pot fires.
Baking Soda. Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) can be used to smother small fires by dumping it on the burning material. Please note that it only works by putting a lot on the fire quickly—it cannot be sprinkled on, so you must have a large supply in a wide-mouth container. This technique is a poor substitute for a fire extinguisher.