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updated: 5/1/2014 9:47 AM

Unattended candle blamed for Mt. Prospect apartment fire

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Daily Herald report

A candle left burning unattended sparked a fire in a Mount Prospect apartment building Wednesday, causing an estimated $40,000 in damage, fire officials said.

Mount Prospect firefighters called at 10:25 a.m. to the apartments at 1834 Palm Drive were confronted with smoke and fire conditions from an apartment on the third floor, according to the fire department.

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The fire, which damaged the apartment's bedroom, was brought under control in approximately 15 minutes, officials said. Only one apartment in the 35-unit complex was damaged, and no one was injured.

Firefighters from Arlington Heights, Des Plaines, Elk Grove Township, Glenview and Rolling Meadows assisted Mount Prospect with the fire.

"A quick response by the fire department led to this fire being brought under control with limited damage to the apartment building," Fire Chief John Malcolm said. "As this fire demonstrates, unattended candles can be dangerous and account for a number of fires each year. Residents should follow candle safety guidelines and recognize the fire risk that unattended candles pose."

The Mount Prospect Fire Department and the National Fire Protection Association recommend the following guidelines when using candles at home:

• Blow out all candles when you leave the room or go to bed. Do not leave candles unattended.

• Put candle holders on a sturdy, uncluttered surface.

• Keep candles at least 12 inches away from anything that can burn.

• Don't burn a candle all the way down. Put it out before it gets too close to the holder or container.

• Never use a candle if oxygen is used in the home.

• Never leave a child alone in a room with a burning candle. Keep matches and lighters up high, out of the reach of children.

• Remember that a candle is an open flame and can easily ignite anything that burns.

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