Date: 27th August, 2019
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service is reminding people not to leave cooking unattended after a flat fire yesterday (26 August).
An elderly man was taken to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation after leaving pans switched on and unattended; he only became aware that fire had broken out when the smoke alarm sounded.
Station Manager Steve Broad said: “Nearly two thirds of all accidental dwelling fires in Dorset and Wiltshire start in the kitchen, and this incident shows just how easy it is for accidents to happen. Thankfully, this property had a working smoke alarm and the occupant was able to escape the flat before fire crews arrived, but the damage to his home is quite severe.”
The Fire and Rescue Service has the following kitchen safety advice:
- Take care if you need to leave the kitchen whilst cooking. Take pans off the heat or turn them down to avoid risk.
- If a pan catches fire, don’t take any risks – Get Out, Stay Out, and Call 999
- Double check the hob is off when you’ve finished cooking.
- Keep tea towels and cloths away from the cooker and hob.
- Take care if you’re wearing loose clothing – this can easily catch fire.
- Avoid leaving children in the kitchen alone when cooking. Keep matches and saucepan handles out of their reach to keep them safe.
- Take care with electrics – leads and appliances away from water and place grills and away from curtains and kitchen rolls.
- Keep your cooking equipment clean and in good working order. A build-up of fat and grease can ignite a fire.
- Don’t cook after drinking alcohol.
- Hot oil can catch fire easily – be careful that it doesn’t overheat.
- Never throw water on a chip pan fire.
- In the event of a fire, have an escape plan in place.
- Make sure you have at least one working smoke alarm and test it weekly.
Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service provide free Safe and Well visits, which aim to make you safer in your own home. A member of DWFRS staff will come to your home and provide you with bespoke home safety advice, covering areas such as the use of candles, cooking, electric blankets, overloading sockets, chimneys, low energy light bulbs and much more. They even fit or replace smoke alarms, if appropriate.
To request a free Safe & Well visit, call 0800 038 2323 or visit www.dwfire.org.uk/safety for more information and advice.