This Dollard couple learned the hard way putting out candles with water can be dangerous
MONTREAL -- Most people are taught not to play with fire at a young age but a Dollard-des-Ormeaux couple found out that candles can be dangerous even when used properly.
Hilary Cohen had little a candle in her bedroom on Saturday night, but “The whole thing blew up... I didn't know what to do,” she said.
Both the candle and its glass container began burning uncontrollably. Cohen began screaming for her partner, Dan Cholewa, to bring some water.
“I came running up with a pitcher of water. I saw the flames rushing up from the glass, they were three or four inches above the glass of the container,” said Cholewa.
But the water turned out to be a bad idea.
“When I put the water over the glass container, I saw a huge fireball. Once we saw that explosion, I said 'Oh my God, our building's just going to blow up,” said Cholewa.
The pair searched for their dog and began getting ready to leave the house. Fortunately, the fire didn't spread, though they were left with a large amount of soot and wax to clean up.
Firefighters don't recommend pouring water to put out a lit candle. Rather, they say it should be covered, similar to how kitchen fires are extinguished.
Government statistics show Cohen and Cholewa didn't have a unique situation. There are an average of 800 candle related fires in Canada every year. Some candles have been subject to recall due to the surface of the wax igniting. Candlemakers recommend the wick be trimmed to no more than a quarter inch before use.