Don’t get into trouble cooking

The blackened and charred remains of a kitchen at a past house fire in Telford
12th December, 2012

More than half of the house fires Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service are called to each year start in the kitchen, revealed the brigade’s community fire safety team.

They will be in Telford town centre on Thursday, December 13th with firefighters for three days to talk to Christmas shoppers with advice on how to avoid a house fire, especially during the festive celebrations.

Free home fire safety checks are available to everyone when firefighters will visit your home and point out any potential fire hazards and give fire prevention advice.

Reminders about the importance of each house having a working smoke alarm installed and advice on cooking safety will be given out by the team who will be based outside Primark in Telford Shopping Centre for three days this week.

“The number of kitchen fires go up at this time of the year and we want to appeal to shoppers to ensure they know how to reduce the chance of fire and what to do if a fire breaks out,” said Rabinder Dhami, Team Leader in the community fire safety department.

“We have had a number of fires, just one this week in Shropshire, in which a householder fell asleep after putting food under the grill. He could have died if it was not for a neighbour raising the alarm.

“Please come and talk to us and find out how you can get a free home fire safety check to avoid this ever happening to you.”

Safety tips in the kitchen are:

  • Do not leave pans unattended.
  • If you are called away for a short time to the phone or front door then turn off the heat.
  • Keep tea towels away from heat.
  • Never overfill chip pans with oil. They should be no more than one-third full of oil.
  • Always use a thermostatically controlled chip pan.
  • Grease and fat set on fire easily, so make sure your cooker and pans are clean.
  • Remember to turn off the cooker after use.
  • Keep matches and lighters away from children.
  • Makes sure you and your family have a fire escape plan.

“But the best advice of all is to stop fire before it starts by paying extra attention to fire safety in the home,” said Rabinder Dhami.