Small kitchen fires doused
Vernon Fire Rescue Services is reminding people to be careful when they cook after responding to two small kitchen fires this week.
Firefighters were called out Sunday and Monday to incidents involving pots that caught fire on the stove.
In both incidents, the fire was contained before significant damage occurred.
Kitchen fires are the No. 1 cause of home fires and home injuries, according to the federal government.
“Kitchen fires can happen quickly,” says Fire Chief David Lind. “If left unattended and forgotten about, even something as simple as cooking a pot of rice can turn into a fire emergency. This weekend was a reminder for everyone to be cautious while cooking and always be prepared to respond to an emergency.”
Don’t walk away. Pay close attention to your cooking.
- Whether you are frying, boiling, grilling, or broiling food, stay in the kitchen when preparing a meal. If you do have to leave the kitchen, even for a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly. It is best to remain in the home while food is cooking.
- Use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
- Remember, it’s not only food that can catch fire. Keep flammable items away from the stove while cooking. This includes: oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains.
Be prepared, sometimes fires can happen, even if you are paying attention.
- Always have a plan for how to respond to a fire in your home.
- Keep your stove and oven clean.
Your kitchen should have a fire extinguisher stored in an easily accessible place. Remember to check the expiration date of the fire extinguisher and replace when necessary.
However, if a small (grease) cooking fire does occur, here are some tips to extinguish the flames:
- On the stovetop, smother the flames by sliding a well-fitting lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
- For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
If you have any doubt about fighting a small fire, get out and call 911.