Think you’ve heard them all? Not a chance. Here are some weird ways to learn how to NOT start a fire. Just in case you find yourself in any of these positions in which you might want to try and start a fire. Just consider these Hot Tips.

This Never Happened To Dr. Frankenstein

Two sisters spent theirs lives together. At the ripe old ages of 73 and 69, they had plenty of time to learn better. But, when the younger sister died, the elder was not going to let that break them up. Sisters forever right? So, without telling the authorities she had a dead body in the home, she decided to preserve it. For whatever reason, she felt gasoline was the best preservative. Then after seeing too many Frankenstein movies, she hooked the body up to a battery to run an electric shock through the brain. Yup. You guessed it. Sister burst into flames and burnt the house down.

Making An Ashtray

Sometimes, the dumbest actions come from the brightest ideas. In an effort to save energy, someone had the bright idea of drilling a hole in the floor and using it as an ashtray. Bright idea? Whoever thought turning your basement into one giant ashtray obviously wasn’t thinking straight. Of course, the first clue this wasn’t a bright idea was when the basement caught fire and burnt the house down. This actually happened in my home town. No, we are not related.

That’ll Stop Any Fires

Rumor has it, the fire was started by a carelessly tossed lit cigarette. Whatever started the fire, it is what they did to prevent any fires that is the real head-scratcher. On July 6, 1944, the Hartford Circus big tent caught fire and burned to the ground, killing 168 people trapped inside. Most of them were women and children as most of the men were off fighting World War II. Three factors led to this tragedy. First, the big top had been fireproofed… by a mixture of paraffin and gasoline! Hmm, wax and gas? Two things to keep AWAY from a fire. Second, the old, rickety wooden chairs had been smothered in oil-based paints over the years. Hmm, oil and fire? Thirdly, the entrances were designed to slow people down so they could keep sneaky ticketless patrons out. Unfortunately, it also kept the paying patrons in. After this tragedy, the big top was, for the most part, abandoned and circuses began renting already built arenas. To paraphrase PT Barnum, ” a sucker is killed every minute.”

Did Anyone Turn The Stove Off?

If things aren’t right in front of us, we tend to forget about them. Like danger. One dark and stormy night, a family was in the middle of cooking dinner when the storm knocked the lights out. No biggie. Father packed everyone up and took them out to eat since they weren’t able to use the electric stove. “But, Dad, what if the power comes back on while we are away? Won’t that start a fire?” Hmm, not obvious so not thought of. While munching away, the power came back on and so did the stove. By the time they came back home fully stuffed and happy, the house was burning down.

Fun Gasoline Facts

Here are some amazing facts to entertain your child (and maybe save his life sometime in the future). Did you know that one cup of gasoline has the explosive power of five sticks of dynamite? Did you know that gasoline can be used to clean your shoes of sticky stuff after you come home? Did you know that drying said shoes in the oven will make the first event happen? Now you know. So does another particular family. True story.


What would you do to stay warm?