Kitchen Fire Prevention

Kitchen with stove and kettle

Never Leave Cooking Unattended

More fires begin in the kitchen than any other room in the home. In fact, residential cooking is one of the leading causes of fire-related deaths. The majority of kitchen fires begin with cooking equipment. Number one on the list of fire sources are stoves, including microwave ovens.

Be Constantly Alert To Cooking Habits

  • Keep pot handles turned toward the back of the stove: a small child could pull on a handle extending out at the front of a stove and be burned or scalded by the pot's contents.
  • Avoid loose clothing while cooking: loose clothing can brush heating elements and easily catch fire.
  • Never leave food cooking unattended on the stove.
  • Never store frequently used items above the stove where you may be burned reaching over the hot stove to get them.
  • Remove pans of cooking fat or oils from the stove when not in use - it's easy to accidentally turn on the wrong burner.
  • Do not microwave metal or items with metallic embellishments

Be Aware Of Your Clothes

Be mindful of what you're wearing while cooking.  Loose sleeves over hot stove burners can catch fire.  Wear clothing with snug cuffs or roll up the sleeves.  If you store things above your stove top, your clothing could catch fire when you lean over stove burners to reach up

Kids & Pets Should Stay Clear

There is an imaginary kid-free zone one metre around your kitchen stove. Enforce it strictly.  Also keep pets from running around underfoot.  They might cause you to trip when you're holding or near to something very hot. Read more about children and fire safety.

To Help Prevent Kitchen Fires

  • Keep stove and oven clean because built-up grease and food particles are easily ignited. Keep combustibles (i.e. curtains, dish towels, plastic or wood utensils, newspapers, grocery bags) away from the stove, oven and all appliances.
  • Unplug kettles, frying pans and other appliances when not in use

To be safe, it is recommended that a fire extinguisher (of the correct type!) is placed nearby any cooking facilities.

Grease & Cooking Oil

If using cooking oil, heat it slowly and never leave the pot or pan unattended.  Keep a large lid close at hand that would fully cover any cooking vessels on the stove.  If the oil or grease should catch fire, the lid can be put over the flames to smother them.  Never try to put out an oil or grease fire with water.  It will splatter, possibly spreading the fire.

Ovens

If a fire starts in your oven or microwave oven, keep the door closed to prevent air from feeding the flames.  Turn the appliance off or pull the plug.  If the flames don't die out quickly, call 911.

Be Alert

Don't cook if you're under the influence of alcohol or if you are drowsy from medication or fatigue.


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