The sounds, smells, and heat generated by a campfire make it one of the most appealing features of any camping trip. However, the very fact that it is a fire makes it important for everyone, especially children, to realize there is an element of danger involved.
Fires should be within the confines of fire pits at campsites. If there is no pit, a spot away from trees, overhanging branches, high grass and dead timber is suitable for a fire. Keep fires away from where children will be playing.
The ground around a campfire should be free of any debris that can burn and potentially spread a fire into the surrounding area. Anything that could cause a child to potentially trip near the fire should be removed.
There should always be a shovel and a full bucket of water nearby to a campfire in case someone needs to extinguish it. Safety measures call for the wood for the fire to sit no less than five feet from the flames and upwind of the fire.
Adults should always supervise any activity such as roasting marshmallows. Long sticks are best for this purpose and children should be warned beforehand not to jostle or roughhouse near the fire.
A campfire left unattended is a calamity waiting to happen. The fire should always have someone nearby to it watching for any problems; however, young children should never be left "in charge" of the fire.