Serving Up Fire Safety with FIREALARM.COM
In case you haven’t been on our social (that’s okay, our feelings aren’t hurt), this week was Fire Prevention Week (October 4th-10th, 2020)! The NFPA deemed this week “Serving Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen” which means that a lot of us have been sharing life-saving fire safety tips for when you’re cooking at home.
We asked our experts the most important fire safety questions and made a quiz for you to test your fire safety knowledge!
1. What is the leading cause of fires in the kitchen?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: Unattended cooking! According to the American Red Cross, 70% of people leave their cooking unattended AND the NFPA reports that 31% of home cooking fires are the result of this. So, never leave your cooking unattended, whether it’s on fried, boiled, broiled, or grilled and set a timer to remind you of simmering and baking items.
2. What should you have in your kitchen in case a fire occurs?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: You should have the proper fire and life safety equipment in your kitchen in the event that a fire occurs. That means making sure you have an in-tact fire extinguisher or a detector the right distance away, of course! (if possible—see question 4). Make sure that you ALSO are using the proper TYPE of fire extinguisher depending on the fire (hint-hint, grease fires!)
3. Where should children stay when cooking appliances and other hot are turned on?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: Children should not be in the kitchen unsupervised. If they ARE in the kitchen doing other things while you cook, make sure that there is a kid-free zone at least 3 feet from hot appliances. Make sure that pot handles are turned IN so that kids or even yourself don’t knock over hot substances. Talk to your kids about fire safety and set up an agreement with them so that they know the rules (eg: no one in the kitchen if someone is cooking, or everyone must be seated while dinner is being prepared)
4. How far away from cooking appliances should smoke detectors be placed?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: For those of you outside of the city with luxurious kitchens NOT the size of a thumbtack, a smoke detector can be placed in your kitchen AT LEAST 10 feet from your cooking appliance. Otherwise, in the next room or at the top of stairs if you have them. (check out our other blog on where to place smoke detectors in your home here).
5. Which items are appropriate to have near your stove top when cooking?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: Clear out that clutter! There shouldn’t be anything that could catch fire anywhere near your stove and cutting down on clutter will eliminate the risk of knocking things over that could cause burns or start fires. Avoid loose clothing and make sure to keep those stovetops and burners clean and grease/food free!
6. What should you do if you have a small grease fire?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: You should keep everything FLAMEABLE away from your stovetop, but to stop grease fires before they get big, keep the lid close by and slide it over your pan when a fire occurs. This will put out the existing flame. NEVER use water on a grease fire, as it will worsen and spread! NEVER use just ANY OLD fire extinguisher to put out grease fires– only chemical fire extinguishers will correctly and safely put out a grease fire. Check at home to see what type of extinguisher YOU have!
7. What should you do if you have a small oven or microwave fire?
OUR EXPERTS SAY: Turn off the heat and keep your oven door closed until it cools down. Make sure to have your oven checked out and fixed by a technician before further use. If your microwave has caught fire, turn off the appliance and keep the door shut also, and have it check out by a technician before further use.
Well, how’d you do? Whether you knew the answers to begin with or not, now you have a better understanding of kitchen fire safety! Stay home, but stay safe folks. Until next time.
– FireAlarm.com’s Social Media Editor
End Note: Information taken from the NFPA and FPW.org website. Stay safe.