Use the holiday to pass on fire safety tips

Thu 1 Aug, 2013

One way of helping keep children safe in the kitchen is to make sure saucepan handles are out of their reach.

With the summer holidays in full swing, firefighters are encouraging parents and carers to use kitchen activities as a chance to talk to children about fire safety.

Station Manager Roy Hocking, from Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service's community safety team, said: "More than half of all accidental house fires start in the kitchen.

"Whether children are lending a hand or simply looking for a snack, it’s important to make sure that they know the hazards of a hot hob.

"It’s also absolutely vital that they know what to do if the worst should happen, so the summer holiday provides an ideal opportunity to pass on your fire safety know-how.

"Test your smoke alarm as part of the activity, and remember, never leave a child alone with a hot hob. Help keep them safe by moving matches and saucepan handles out of their reach.”

Roy's top tips for staying safe in the kitchen this summer are:

  • Take care if you need to leave the kitchen while 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.
  • Don't leave children in the kitchen alone when cooking. Keep matches and saucepan handles out of their reach.
  • Keep electrical leads and appliances away from water, and place grills and away from curtains and kitchen rolls.
  • Keep your equipment clean and in good working order. A build-up of fat, grease or toast crumbs 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. Don’t take risks by tackling the fire - get out, stay out and call 999.
  • Test your smoke alarms weekly, and encourage your children to remind you to do this.