CPSC Warns of Dangers of Generators and Candles During Power Outage

August 15, 2003
Release Number: 03170

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission urges consumers to exercise caution when using generators and candles during the power outage currently affecting portions of the Northeast.

-Shut off all unnecessary electrical appliances and equipment.

-If you have a portable generator, only run it outdoors with adequate ventilation. Never use a generator indoors or in attached garages. Exhaust fumes contain carbon monoxide, which can be deadly if inhaled.

-Plug individual appliances into the generator using heavy duty, outdoor rated cords with a wire gauge adequate for the appliance load.

-Make sure that the battery in your smoke detector is fresh. Test the smoke detector to make sure it's working.

-Avoid the use of candles if at all possible. Instead use flashlights or glowsticks. If you must use candles do not put them on or near anything that will burn. And never leave burning candles unattended.