By Major Van Harl
Kevin's Kandles Save Lives.
Wisconsin –-(Ammoland.com)- We have a problem in North America, because of electricity in our lives we believe we are always entitled to bright light at anytime. No matter what the time of night it is, if we want to turn every light in the house on and make like it is day time, then so be it.
Mr. Edison changed everyone's life north and south of the US / Canadian border.
Both of my parents lived on farms and did not have electricity in their homes until after WWII. For the most part they had one or two kerosene lamps that were lit as the sun went down, permitting some safe movement in the home after dark. My folks however, went to bed a lot earlier back in those days.
Besides no electric lights there was no TV or radio, let alone all the high speed, low drag electronics today's society insists their lives cannot function without. If you did not have 100 cable TV channels to stay up all night and watch, you tend not to stay up. If you take away your children's smart phones and other electronics they tend not to stay up all night.
Most normal people in today's society do not want to stay up all night in the dark. They want bright electrical light.
Evil does like the dark and evil does tend to stay up all night in a blackout and take full advantage of your lighting crisis.
The problem is when the power goes out modern man is conditioned to want more, in fact much more than one lonely candle to provide just enough light so you do not break your neck stumbling around a dark home.
So what we do is light a second candle and since most people have very limited experience using candles other than the ones you light that supposedly make the house smell so good, we are pleasantly surprised how much brighter it is. If two candles work so well then let us light a dozen candles and really brighten the night up, you see this in movies & TV shows all the time.
My civil war era grandfather's daughter died from severe burns after catching her clothes on fire. This happened when she came in contact with a candle used to light the home. Family legend has it that grandpa John was a grouchy old man until the day he died. I would suspect watching your young child burn up in front of you might affect your view on life.
The problem with the above concept of emergency lighting is modern home dwellers forget about fire safety. When people light candles and in a low impact crisis they forget fire safety.
If you look back into the history of law enforcement and the development of police departments they descend out of the era of the night watchman. We think that “Pop” the night watchman was first there to stop bad guys committing crimes in the night. No, he was there to watch for fires, sound the alarm if one was spotted and help organize a fire suppression response if flames broke out.
My suggestion to the reader is do a web search for “shack fires” (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shack_fires_in_South_Africa). Instantly articles and photos of recent shack fires in South Africa will appear, and as you read you will find this is a never ending and constantly reoccurring safety and death causing disaster in the third world.
Now wait a minute, here in North America we are “first world.” We don't live in shacks and we don't burn our meager homes down with candles.
We actually do on occasion burn our homes down with candles. We light the candles, we think they are safe and we leave them unattended. The disaster happens when the candle is either knocked over and the flame has some other fuel source or a readily combustible fuel comes in contact with the candle. There you have it, your North American Mc-Mansion shack fire.
Candles have been around since man figured out how to roll a piece of string in animal fat, add flame and you had light. The majority of today's candles are made from petroleum products. If you use beeswax candles you are ahead of the game but at current prices beeswax is about ten times as expensive as oil based candles and they can be unsafe also.
In a crisis you have to have a light source that does not use electricity. If you live off the grid or are camping for an extended time you will need a flame generating light source and candles can and will fill that need. The question is how safe will that need be met?
Kevin Dawson is a retired Montreal, Canada firefighter and fire marshal. He worked for the United Nations with an appointment to Liberia, Africa as a fire marshal. Mr. Dawson has a profound understanding of candle generated structure fires. He has seen the damage these fires cause and the loss of life that invariability happens in third world countries that have limited building codes and even more limited safety practices.
Mr. Dawson is the developer of Kevin's Kandles, which is a device and a way to create candle light and meet the never ending needs of those who have no electricity, long term or temporary (www.asafercandle.com). Kevin's Kandles is a disk he calls the float. The float has a small hole drilled in the middle that you insert a short candle wick.
Instead of using wax candles or a lantern burning kerosene you use vegetable oil. Taking a glass jar or dish you fill it half way with water. Pour in about 1/2 inch of vegetable oil and then place the float with wick onto the oil. Now you have the fuel for up to 10 hours of light generating burn time. When the oil is consumed and the float sinks down to the water level, the candle goes out.
If the glass dish is knocked over the water and what oil is left will in most cases snuff out the candle wick and prevent a fire. Nothing is 100% when you are dealing with open flame fire safety, but Mr. Dawson has greatly increased the survivability rate.
The other issue is the cost. Burning vegetable oil is a lot cheaper that burning candles and the food grade oil is a renewable source of fuel. There are very few homes in North America that you could not find a bottle of cooking oil to supply your emergency lighting fuel needs.
A crisis creates stress and stress creates mistakes. Mistakes cost lives. Unless you are living permanently off the grid a couple of packages of Mr. Dawson's Kevin's Kandles could be all you will ever need. Now if you live off the grid you really do need Kevin's Kandles.
If you want to get everyone in your family something for next Christmas that they might actually use and appreciate, Kevin's Kandles are a safe bet both figuratively and practically.
If you want a very good read that will scare the heck out of you, read The Final Day by William R. Forstchen, his third book in a series about an EMP going off over the US has just come out. This EMP blast destroys the power grid and of course lighting is the first thing of go. The world is plunged into the dark and in the unsafe hast to get some non electric light functioning many of the early survivors parish in fires.
Hard times are coming and people always make costly mistakes in a crisis. You have to light the way in a black-out, but you also have to wake up alive the next morning. Mr. Dawson is here to help you light that way safely, effectively and save you money doing it.
You have heard the expression, “it is worth its weight in gold”. In time of real crisis, a Silver Fire rocket stove, 22LR ammunition, and a case of Kevin's Kandles will be worth their weight in gold. In fact they well be more valuable. You cannot eat, cook, hunt or light your way with gold.
Major Van Harl USAF Ret
About Major Van Harl USAF Ret.:Major Van E. Harl USAF Ret., a career Police Officer in the U.S. Air Force was born in Burlington, Iowa, USA, in 1955. He was the Deputy Chief of police at two Air Force Bases and the Commander of Law Enforcement Operations at another. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army Infantry School. A retired Colorado Ranger and currently is an Auxiliary Police Officer with the Cudahy PD in Milwaukee County, WI. His efforts now are directed at church campus safely and security training. He believes “evil hates organization.” [email protected]