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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Avoiding Fire Hazards While Cooking

5/28/2019 (Permalink)

Do you have fond memories of spending quality time in the kitchen with loved ones while catching up with each other or preparing and sharing a meal together? The kitchen can be a wonderfully versatile place, but it is also a place where many home fires break out.

Cooking fires top the charts as the No. 1 cause of home fires and injuries, and the leading cause of these kitchen fires is unattended cooking.

In 2017 alone, State Farm paid out in excess of $130 million in homeowners insurance claims related to grease and other cooking fires. According to the insurance company, these are the worst states for kitchen fires:

  • North Carolina
  • Texas
  • Pennsylvania
  • California
  • Ohio
  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • New York
  • Alabama
  • Georgia

Cooking Safety Tips

Besides the obvious precaution of staying in the kitchen while cooking, this is not the only fire safety tip you should be following. Here are some other helpful tips to observe while cooking:

1. Be careful of the type of clothing you are wearing. If your outfit has long, flowing sleeves or is oversized and baggy, it could catch on fire if you aren’t careful while cooking over the stove. It’s best to wear short or close-fitted sleeve shirts and make sure any baggy shirts are tucked in or tied back.

2. Keep flammable objects away from the stovetop. Make sure kitchen towels, oven mitts, appliance cords or even curtains aren’t too close to the stovetop when cooking. Ideally, anything flammable will be moved away from it.

3. Equip your home with a fire extinguisher in or near the kitchen. Hopefully you have at least one fire extinguisher located in your home, ideally one that is near your kitchen. Make sure you know how to properly use the extinguisher, just in case it is ever needed.

4. Hot grease is a fire hazard when placed in the garbage too soon. Do not throw hot grease in the garbage can. The grease may not be on fire, but it could be hot enough to cause something in the trash to burn. You should let the grease cool a bit and then dispose of it in an old coffee can. Also, know the smoke points of the oils you cook with. Be sure to never subject a low-smoke point oil to high heat when cooking, as it could catch fire.

5. Make sure you have a fire escape plan established. Thinking about and being prepared for the worst that can happen can save lives, and it’s better to be safe than sorry should an emergency occur. Go over exit routes and designated meeting places with your family, making sure that everyone knows what to do.

Fire safety in the kitchen is an absolute necessity, as it can help prevent dangerous and destructive cooking fires. If your home has experienced damage from a cooking fire, know that SERVPRO® of North Huntington is here to make it “Like it never even happened.”

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