Cooking is often relaxing and fun and the kitchen is a wonderful place for families and friends to gather. But as you know, cooking is also the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries.
During Fire Prevention Month, the Crestwood Department of Fire Services wants to remind the community about these cooking facts to help them understand the fire risks in the kitchen.
Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires.
Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking at high temperatures. If you must leave, turn off the burner. When simmering on the stove or baking in the oven, set a timer if you leave the kitchen to remind you that you are cooking. It is very easy to get distracted by electronics and lose track of time.
Many home cooking fires happen on the kitchen range.
Before you turn on the heat, move dishtowels, bags, boxes, paper and curtains – basically anything that can burn – away from the stove. When you are finished, wipe up any spills or food that may have fallen on the stove.
Frying is the greatest risk for a home cooking fire.
Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking at high temperatures, like frying, boiling and grilling. When oil gets too hot, it can easily start a fire. Keep a pot lid or a cookie sheet nearby when you are cooking at high temperatures. If the pot starts to flame, put the lid or cookie sheet over the pot, turn off the heat and let it cool.
Other Tips and Tricks
- Keep an eye on what you fry. Most cooking fires start when someone is frying food.
- Watch what you are cooking. Fires start when the heat is too high. If you see any smoke or the grease starts to boil, turn the burner off.
- Make sure you are awake and alert. Alcohol and some drugs can make you sleepy.
- Wear short sleeves or roll them up so they don’t catch on fire.
- Make sure children and pets stay at least 3 feet away from a hot stove.
- Turn pot handles toward the back of the stove so no one can bump them or pull them over.
- Move things that can burn away from the stove. This includes dishtowels, bags, boxes, paper and curtains.