Cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. It’s important to be alert to prevent cooking fires.
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, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- If you are simmering, baking, roasting, or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
- Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains — away from your stovetop.
- Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking. Loose clothing can dangle onto stove burners and can catch fire if it
comes in contact with a gas flame or electric burner.
- Have a "kid-free zone" of at least 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.
- Open microwaved food slowly , away from the face. Hot steam from a container of microwaved food or the food itself can cause burns.
- Never heat a baby bottle in a microwave oven because it heats liquids unevenly. Heat baby bottles in warm water.
If you have a cooking fire
- Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
- Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number after you leave.
- 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.
- In case of an oven fire turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent flames from burning you or your clothing. After a fire, the oven should be checked and/or serviced before being used again.
- Treat a burn right away , putting it in cool water. Cool the burn for three to five minutes.
Cover with a clean, dry cloth. If the burn is bigger than your fist, or if you have any questions, get medical help right away.
Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week website, www.firepreventionweek.org. ©2011 NFPA.