The Plainfield Fire Protection District is asking everyone to please observe Fire Prevention Week which begins Sunday, Oct. 6.
This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme is “Prevent Kitchen Fires.”
Cooking is the leading cause of home fires and fire injuries. The U.S. Fire Administration and the National Fire Protection Association note that every year there are approximately 164,500 residential cooking fires These fires result in an annual average of 400 fire related deaths, 5,080 fire related injuries and $853 million in damage. The majority of cooking fires occur between 5 pm and 8 pm. The things most likely to catch fire are oils, fats and grease.
A few phrases to help you remember kitchen fire safety are “stand by your pan” and “keep an eye on what you fry.” Never leave your kitchen while you’re frying, grilling or broiling food, not even for a minute. If you must leave the kitchen, turn off the stove.
“Put a lid on it” is a phrase to help you remember how to extinguish a pan fire. While wearing an oven mitt, slide the lid onto the pan and turn the burner off. Let the pan cool before removing the lid. Do not move the pan; never try to carry a pan that is on fire out of your house. Never put water on a grease fire! Water will cause the grease fire to flare up and splatter. For a fire in your oven or microwave, turn off the appliance and keep the door closed.
In any cooking related fire, if putting a lid on it, or turning off the appliance and keeping the door shut does not cause the fire to immediately go out then leave your home and call 9-1-1.
When simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food remain in your home and check the food regularly. It is a good idea to always use a timer while cooking to remind you to check your food. Avoid cooking if you’re sleepy, have been drinking alcohol or take medications that make you drowsy.
Keep your kitchen safe by moving things that can catch fire away from your stovetop. Examples include potholders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, towels, etc. Keep your stovetop, burners and oven clean; don’t allow grease or spills to accumulate because they will add fuel to a fire.
To prevent accidents and burn injuries in the kitchen keep a three-foot “kid free zone” around your oven and stovetop. Always turn pot handles towards the back of the stove so they don’t stick out where you could bump into them or a child could pull the handle down. Keep hot foods and liquids away from table and counter edges.
When young children are present use the back burners whenever possible. Never hold a child while cooking, drinking or carrying hot foods or liquids. When children are old enough to start cooking always supervise them in the kitchen and teach them safe cooking practices. Always make sure pets stay away from cooking surfaces and nearby countertops to prevent them from knocking things over onto a burner.
Wear short sleeves or roll up your sleeves when cooking to help prevent your clothes from catching on fire. If your clothes do catch on fire remember the phrase “stop, drop and roll.” Stop where you are, drop to the floor, lay flat, cover your face with your hands and roll over and over to smother the fire out. Never walk around or run because doing so will fan a clothing fire and make it spread. reat burns right away with cool water. Cool a burn for 3 to 5 minutes. If a burn is bigger than your fist, or if you are unsure how to treat it, seek immediate medical attention, if you need an ambulance call 9-1-1.Fire Prevention Week was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire that burned on Oct. 8 and 9 in 1871.
The Plainfield Fire Protection District will kick off Fire Prevention Week with an open house from noon to 3 p.m. at Station 2, 23806 W. 135th St. The day's events include a children's firefighter challenge, child safety seat inspections, station tours and more. Click for details.