Stay safe in the kitchen
I’m Kevin Jones, Head of Community Safety for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service.
My role is all about making our communities as safe as possible – and I’d like to start 2022 by highlighting the importance of cooking safety and the dangers of kitchen fires.
There are more fires in the kitchen than in any other room in the home – and it only takes one small distraction for a fire to start.
Please never leave cooking unattended for any length of time and don’t drink or cook – and please help us get these messages through to any elderly or vulnerable family, friends or neighbours you may have.
Smoke alarms save lives - the early warning provided by a smoke alarm can provide vital minutes to help you escape unharmed.
I’d ask everyone to consider elderly or vulnerable family and neighbours, and ensure they are safe too.
I'm urging people to stay safe and protect their homes from fire by following the tips below to stay safe in the kitchen:
- When cooking, take care if you're wearing loose clothing as it can easily catch fire.
- Keep electrical leads, tea towels and cloths away from the cooker and hob.
- Never leave children alone in the kitchen.
- Keep matches, lighters and saucepan handles where children can't reach them, and fit a safety catch on the oven door.
- Keep the oven, hob, toaster and grill clean - a build-up of fat, crumbs or grease can easily catch fire.
- Don't use matches or lighters to light gas cookers - spark devices, which you can buy from hardware stores, are safer.
- Don't leave pans on the hob when you're not around. Take them off the heat if you have to leave the kitchen.
- Angle saucepan handles so they don't stick out from the hob, or over a naked flame.
- When you have finished cooking, make sure you switch off the oven and hob.
- Consider the installation of heat alarms or Stoveguard (an alarm that fits to electric hobs and scans it for excessive heat and smoke), both conforming to the relevant BSEN standards and positioned as per manufacturer’s instruction.
- If you regularly deep-fry food, consider buying an electric deep-fat fryer. They have thermostats fitted so they can't overheat and are safer to use.
- Dry food before putting it into hot oil, to prevent the oil from splashing and burning you.
- If you don't have an electric deep-fat fryer and are using an ordinary pan, never fill it more than one-third.
- If the oil starts to smoke, it's too hot. Turn the heat off and leave it to cool.
- If the oil catches fire, turn off the hob only if it’s safe to do so. Consider leaving the property and calling 999.
- Never throw water onto oil that’s on fire, this will only make the fire spread quicker
I want us all the work together to help keep our communities safe - let’s all Think Safe to Stay Safe.