Prevent Kitchen Fires This Holiday Season

By November 8, 2015LACoFD News

Did you know Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires? The Los Angeles County Fire Department urges you to be safe this holiday season! (FLIER)

Home fires involving cooking equipment occur more often on Thanksgiving Day than any other day of the year, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Fires are more likely to start in the kitchen than in any other room in the home. Two common causes of home fires are unattended cooking and failing to clean appliances, while leaving stove tops unattended while cooking is the cause of 34 percent of home fires and 50 percent of home fire deaths.

Another contributing factor to home fires is failing to clean appliances.  According to National Fire Incident Reporting Systems data, 17 percent of home fires involve dirty ovens or rotisseries.  In addition, it’s important to clear the area around the hearth of debris, decorations and flammable materials.

All of these home fires can be easily avoided. Here are some tips to follow for a safe holiday season in the kitchen:

  • Never leave cooking food unattended.
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking.
  • Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling or broiling food. If you must leave the kitchen—even for a short period of time—turn the stove off.
  • Keep anything that can catch on fire, such as paper or plastic, pot holders, oven mitts, or wooden utensils, bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains, away from your stove top, oven and any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat.
  • If you are simmering, baking, boiling or roasting food, check it regularly. Remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind yourself that the stove or oven is on.
  • Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup.
  • Keep the floor clear so that you don’t trip over kids, toys or any miscellaneous items.
  • Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens and small appliances are turned off.

Following these simple tips in the kitchen can make a difference in your safety this holiday season. Need a reminder? Download our Thanksgiving flier.