The holidays are coming…and that means home cooked meals and festive decorations. It can also mean cooking related kitchen fires and mishaps from decorative candles. Stay safe during and after the holidays by taking some simple precautions. PREVENTING KITCHEN FIRES According to the National Fire Protection Association two out of five fires at home start in the kitchen and 34% of reported home cooking fires were due to unattended cooking.
- Never leave cooking unattended, and do not cook if you are drowsy.
- Avoid loose fitting clothing and sleeves while cooking.
- Turn pot handles inward & keep lids handy in case they are needed.
- Smother grease fires. Don’t panic…carefully cover the pan with the lid. Never pour water on a grease fire because it will flare.
- Turn off hood fans so the fire doesn’t spread to your ducts.
- Keep stove tops and ovens clean.
- Make sure flammable objects are away from the stove. Dishtowels, potholders & curtains should be at least 3 feet away from the stove.
CANDLE SAFETY Most candle fires occur on Christmas, New Year’s Day and Christmas Eve, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
- Most candle fires occur when burning candles are left unattended.
- Candles should be placed on heat resistant surfaces like ceramics, well away from children, pets or flamable materials.
- Candles should never be lit if the possibility of sleep is imminent.
- Candles can also produce soot that leaves a residue on your walls, ceiling and furniture.
- Reduce candle soot by looking for candles that are firm to the touch. A soft candle indicates a higher concentration of oil, which can leave a soot residue while burning. This can also be true of overly scented candles. The fragrance is often contained in perfumed oil added to the wax.
- Try to create a clean, even-burning flame and keep candles out of drafts.
- Wicks must be kept trimmed to ¼ inch.
Visit NFPA.org for more information on cooking & candle safety