The National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) Fire Prevention Week runs from Oct. 8-14 this year. Since 1922, this annual campaign has aimed to help people across the United States understand and implement fire safety awareness tips. This year’s campaign, “Cooking Safety Starts With You,” focuses on helping people learn about preventing kitchen fires.
To commemorate Fire Prevention Week and minimize the risk of a fire starting in your kitchen, consider the following guidance:
- Remain present—According to the NFPA, unattended cooking is the leading cause of home fires.
- Stay sober—Do not cook while intoxicated or under the influence.
- Consider attire—Wear short-sleeved or tight-fitting clothing while cooking to ensure your garments do not dangle into open flames or other heat sources.
- Restrict access—Keep children and pets away from cooking areas.
- Keep it clean—Remove unnecessary clutter that could be flammable, such as wooden utensils, oven mitts, towels and food packaging.
- Unplug appliances—Keep countertop and portable appliances, such as toasters and coffee makers, unplugged when not in use.
- Maintain alarms—Ensure kitchens have working smoke detectors and test them regularly. Do not temporarily disable these devices for any reason.
- Keep an extinguisher—Residential fire extinguishers should be kept on every level of a home, including in the kitchen. Make sure you are familiar with how to operate these devices before you need them.