Fact: According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), cooking equipment is the leading cause of home fires in the U.S. On average, there are 99,300 cooking fires each year resulting in 290 deaths, 4,940 injuries and $400 million in property damage. In addition, 42% of the people who have died in cooking fires were asleep.
As with all types of fires, most kitchen and cooking fires can be avoided by following these easy safety tips from NFPA:
- Never leave and item cooking on your stove or in your oven unattended.
- Promptly turn off all appliances after you’re finished using them, and unplug electrical appliances when they’re not in use. Don’t overload electrical circuits.
- Keep appliances clean, wiping appliance surfaces after spills. Clean stove surfaces and ovens regularly.
- Wear tight-fitting sleeves, or roll them up securely when cooking
- Keep flammable objects, including pot holders, dish towels and curtains, at least three feet (one meter) from the stove.
- To prevent a child from bumping into or grabbing a pot handle, turn handles inward toward the back of the stove.
Be prepared for grease pan fires by always keeping a lid and oven mitt near by. If a pan of food catches fire, put on the oven mitt and carefully slide a lid over the pan. Turn off the burner, don’t move the pan and keep the lid on until the pan cools completely.
If a fire starts in your oven, close the oven door and turn off the heat source. If the flames don’t go out immediately, call the fire department.