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Enjoy Cooking Safely this Month

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Enjoy Cooking Safely this Month

Each year cooking causes more accidental fires in the home than anything else and this month Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is supporting the Fire Kills Cooking safety campaign.

With Valentine's Day this Saturday, Shrove Tuesday next week and National Chip Week between 16 and 22 February, HWFRS is issuing vital safety messages to people across the two counties.

Last year, over half of all accidental fires in the home started in the kitchen. HWFRS attended 116 cooking related fires last year alone, these included fires in the oven, grill and toaster and microwave ovens.

Station Commander Alan Haley from the Community Risk department, HWFRS said 'From the chip shop to the kitchen table, chips will quite rightly be on the menu this week particularly as its National Chip Week; but people need to be aware that a chip pan could lead to a fire in a matter of moments.

"Oven chips are a safer and healthier way to enjoy your favourite meal, but if you do choose to deep fat fry please don't leave the pan unattended. If your pan does catch light, don't throw water over it – get out, stay out and call 999".

He continued: "Shrove Tuesday is next week and whilst making pancakes can be lots of fun for the whole family, last year more than 46 cooking-related fires took place on the cooker, so it's essential to take care, especially when cooking with hot oil."

Station Commander Haley urged anyone who is cooking over the next week, whether it is cooking a meal for a loved one on Valentine's Day, cooking pancakes with the kids or simply enjoying some chips during National Chip Week, to take note of the following safety tips:

  • Never leave the pan unattended when the heat is switched on;
  • Keep children safely away from the cooking area;
  • Ensure all appliances are turned off once you've finished cooking;
  • Clean your grill/oven regularly;
  • Take care with hot oil;
  • Don't overfill the chip pan;
  • NEVER attempt to move the pan if it does catch fire;
  • Do not take risks: if the pan should catch fire, turn off the heat only if it's safe to do so. Never throw water over the pan.
  • Do not tackle the fire yourself: GET OUT, STAY OUT, CALL 999.

SC Haley concluded: "In addition to the above vital safety advice, I would urge people to test their smoke alarms are working on a weekly basis. If you require further advice on fire safety or would like to call the Community Risk department to see if you qualify for a free Home Safety Check please call 0800 032 1155."

Further kitchen safety advice is available at www.hwfire.org.uk under the Your Safety section or visit @HWFireSafety

Issued by Emma Roberts, Senior Community Risk Administrator (Tel: 01905 368238