National fire statistics show that the kitchen is the leading room for fire injuries & fire origins. With this in mind the Waupaca Volunteer Fire Department wants you to know how to reduce your risk of kitchen fires & burns by giving the following suggestions:
- Keep things that burn away from the cooking area & appliances in your kitchen. Don’t place towels, pot holders, pizza boxes, or paper bags on the stove or near hot appliances.
- Clean any grease build-up from the stove, oven & exhaust fan regularly. Cooking grease & oil ignite easily & burn rapidly. If grease catches fire, put a lid on it. The lid will smother the fire. Do not use water or flour on a grease fire. It will make the fire bigger. Do not try to carry a burning pan outside or to the sink. You could accidentally spread the fire. Keep a lid, baking soda, or an ABC fire extinguisher handy in the kitchen, and know how to use it.
- Avoid reaching over the stove for anything while cooking. Store frequently needed items in other areas of the kitchen. Don’t store cookies or other “treats” near the stove. It might tempt little children to climb on the stove. Keep young children & pets away from cooking areas entirely.
- Keep pot handles turned inward, out of the reach of children & pets. Keep appliance cords up on counter tops too. Check those cords regularly for frayed or broken spots. Replace damaged cords or appliances.
- Dress for fire safety in the kitchen. Wear snug fitting clothes while you are cooking. Don’t wear loose fitting clothing, like nightgowns & bathrobes while cooking.
- Never leave cooking unattended. If you must leave the kitchen for some reason, turn the heat off & take something with you to remind you that you have something cooking.
- Shield yourself from steam when uncovering food, especially microwave servings. Steam can cause serious burns.