Cooking-related fires are the number one cause of home fires and home fire injuries, and 47% of them start as the result of cooking equipment left unattended, according to the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA). "Never leave a burner unattended for more than a couple minutes" sounds like an easy rule to follow but is more challenging in practice as distractions arise.
Mountain View Fire and Rescue suggests setting a timer when you walk away from the range. It not only alerts you when food is ready; it also helps ensure you return to the stovetop before too long after a distraction. A few other tips:
- Keep smoke alarms in good working order.
- Clean and maintain vents, stovetops, countertops, and oven interiors.
- Keep combustible items such as wooden spoons, rags, oven mitts, and loose paper several feet away from the stovetop and oven to prevent these items from starting a fire.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby.
- Pay close attention when cooking with oil or grease.
For more information, visit www.nfpa.org/Public-Education. Are you interested in kids' fire safety? Visit www.Sparky.org for activities, videos, lessons, and games.