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Take extra care appeal following four cooking fires within 12 hours


Firefighters attended four cooking fires within 12 hours yesterday – and a senior fire officer is asking the public to listen to his appeal to take extra care in their homes and help reduce the demand on firefighters in the region.


Firefighters were called to an incident at Uxbridge Court, Bangor involving an electric steamer melted on an electric hob at 18.30hrs, and incidents involving cooking left unattended at a property on Marine Road, Prestatyn at 21.52hrs and at Lamberton Drive, Wrexham at 22.46hrs. They also attended a fire involving a chip pan at Tryweryn Place, Wrexham at 12.52hrs.


Paul Scott, Senior Fire Safety Manager, said: “Our big appeal to the public at this difficult time is for them to take extra care, and keep basic fire safety in mind to help avoid incidents such as these and reduce the demand on our firefighters.


“These incidents were completely avoidable - and the biggest favour you can do us right now is avoid having an emergency.


“Thankfully no-one was hurt in these fires but the outcome could have been very different – with firefighters having to lead the occupants in the Wrexham incident outside to safety.


“Across Wales, over 40% of all fires in the home start in the kitchen – showing just how easy preparing a meal can turn to disaster. With more people spending more time cooking at home, this number could rise even higher.


“Just one distraction really could spell disaster - it sounds obvious but getting distracted is one of the main causes of a kitchen fire, whether it’s a distraction from our children or simply using a mobile phone or tablet.


“Time and time again we attend house fires which have started in the kitchen – it is so easy to forget your cooking, especially if you are tired, distracted or have been drinking. However, the consequences can be devastating.


Here are Paul's top tips for safety in the kitchen:

- If you leave the room take the cooking off the heat

- Don't use matches or lighters to light gas cookers. Spark devices are safer

- Always make sure that any handles are turned away from the edge of the cooker

- Keep the oven, hob and grill clean - a build-up fat and grease can easily catch fire

- Never hang anything to dry above the cooker or leave anything on the cooker top

- Take care if you are wearing loose clothing as it can easily catch fire

- When you've finished cooking make sure everything is turned off

- Turn off electrical appliances when they are not being used

- Never use a chip pan - use a thermostatically controlled deep fat fryer, air fryer or use oven chips

- Get fitted with smoke alarms - they are free of charge and could save your life.

- Never run back into the property, once you are out stay out! Inhaling the smoke could seriously affect your chances of coming out of the property a second time.

- Cooking after drinking is a recipe for disaster. Countless fires are caused each year by people drinking alcohol and deciding to cook a snack for themselves before going to bed.

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