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Staying Safe in the Kitchen

Updated: Mar 10, 2021

Did you know that THE #1 cause of home fires is cooking? It might surprise you, but statistics name cooking as a significant danger for those who are not vigilant in the kitchen.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, (NFPA) from 2013-2017, cooking fires accounted for 49% of all home fires, with ranges or cooktops amounting to 2/3rds of the total. The other 1/3 fires were caused by unattended equipment.

pan on stove with food on fire

According to their website, the NFPA recommends the following while cooking:

  • Be on alert! If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don’t use the stove or stovetop.

  • Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, boiling, or broiling food.

  • If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, make sure your check it regularly.

  • Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains — away from your stovetop.

Should something catch fire while you are cooking, reaction time is essential.

  • If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.

  • Keep a lid nearby when you’re cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.

  • For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

Fire extinguishers should be easily accessed and mounted on a wall 15 feet or less from the kitchen. Smoke alarms are also essential and need to be checked on. According to the NFPA smoke alarms should:

  • Be tested at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.

  • Batteries should be changed every 6 months. An easy reminder is when you change your clocks for Daylight Savings, change your batteries.

  • Be replaced every 10 years.

Either when a smoke alarm sounds, OR you have an actual fire, the best thing to do is get outside and stay outside! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire, and immediately call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number AFTER you leave.

Once the fire is extinguished and you have a chance to survey your surroundings, you may need to call in a professional to clean the soot and smoke which can cause a completely different set of problems. Dry Master Restorations is always available, 24/7, 365 days a year for any emergency.

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