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Every year, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) devotes the third week in October to National Fire Prevention Week. The theme for this year is “Prevent Kitchen Fires,” with fire departments throughout the country holding local community events designed to educate the public on preventing fires in that busy area of the house. Here are some valuable tips they will be sharing:
- Stay in the kitchen when you’re cooking on the stovetop. If you are frying, grilling, broiling or boiling food, you must be in the room to make sure your food doesn’t burn. The safety concern is not only for burned food, but for smoke in the air and the pan catching fire.
- Stay in the home when you’re cooking in the oven. If you are baking, roasting or braising food in the oven, you don’t necessarily need to be in the kitchen, but you do need to be in the home – and you definitely need to use a timer to prevent any fire risks.
- Keep your smoke alarm on while cooking. Some people are tempted to remove their smoke alarm batteries when cooking certain dishes. But whether you are baking cookies or frying up bacon, your smoke alarm should stay on. Disabling it could put your family at risk of harmful smoke inhalation.
- Keep your kids and pets safe while cooking. Young children have been known to burn themselves on front burner pots and pans. Teaching them not to touch is good, but putting things on the back burner to remove the risk is better. Pets should also be kept at least three feet from the stove.
- Keep flammable items away from the stove. Avoid cooking with loose-fitting sleeves. Hanging sleeves can easily catch fire. As for necessary items like potholders and kitchen towels, they should be safely to the side on the counter – not the stove.
These are just some of the tips that fire departments want citizens to know when it comes to preventing kitchen fires. If there is a National Fire Prevention Week event going on in your community, we encourage you to attend. Search #NationalFirePreventionWeek on Twitter to find an event near you!
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