Children & Fire

Every year, hundreds of children die in home fires started by children who were using or playing with matches or lighters.

Children have a normal and healthy fascination with fire.  If your children express curiosity about fire, or if you find they have been playing with matches or lighters, it’s best to respond calmly, not punitively.

An excellent approach is to explain firmly to your child that matches and lighters are tools for adults to use carefully.  Find safe ways to let your child participate in your careful use of fire.  Let them blow out candles, for example, or put charcoal in the grill before you light it.   As children grow more mature, they can learn how to use matches and lighters safely, but only under adult supervision.


Children as young as two years old have been reported to have started fires with matches and lighters. If you live with children, treat matches and lighters as you would treat a dangerous weapon: Store them up high, out of children’s reach, preferably in a locked cabinet.

Teach very young that if they see matches or lighters they should not touch them, but to tell a grown-up about them and where they are. School-age children, on the other hand, should be taught to bring matches or lighters to an adult so the hazard can be removed from younger children.

Children are naturally curious about fire.  An estimated 10% of home candle fires are started by children playing with candles or with combustible materials near candles.

  •  Don’t let children play with candles or dripping wax.
  • Never leave a child unattended in a room with a burning candle.
  • Don’t allow children or teens to burn candles in their bedrooms.
  • Store candles, matches, and lighters up high and out of children’s sight and reach.Fire safety for Kids

Always Remember …   Stop, Drop and Roll


Stop where you are, Drop to the ground, cover your face with your hands, and Roll over and over to smother the fire.

  Baby Sitting – Child Care Safety Infant and childcare safety tips include:

  • Keep poisons medicines away from children’s reach.
  • Make sure children are strapped in their car seats or high chairs.
  • Post family member names for emergency contact.
  • Keep all guns, knives and sharp objects away from children.
  • Learn child and infant CPR.

Web Links for kids to enjoy!  –    Sparky’s home page  –   Smokey the Bear home page

“Fire Safety for Kids”

The Oneida Fire Department conducts tours of the department for school groups and organizations.  Please contact the Department at 363-1910 to schedule an appointment for your group to visit the Oneida Fire Department.

Tips for Child Safety (Fire Safety & Winter Safety)

• Fire Safety Checklist


Stay Connected

Fire Dept Best Practice Guidelines

External Links