Davis firefighter Joe Simione has just taken off his protective clothes and mask to show pupils at Montessori Country Day School II on Spafford Street what he would look like if there had been an actual fire in their home. Davis firefighters visit many local schools during October, Fire Prevention Month, to share fire safety tips with children. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo

Local News

Fire education campaign focuses on kitchen safety

By From page A3 | October 23, 2013

Just for kids

* Measure a 3-foot “kid-free” zone around the stove and cooktop;

* Are you old enough to use the microwave? Have a grown-up teach you;

* Are you tall enough to reach the microwave? The microwave should be low enough so you can reach it without standing on a chair or stool, and your face should be higher than the front of the door;

* Cool a burn right away, and tell a grown-up if you get burned

Preventing kitchen fires is the focus of public education campaigns across the country during October, which is Fire Prevention Month. Davis firefighters join the cause by asking people to put a lid on dangers and prevent kitchen fires.

More home fires start in the kitchen than anywhere else, according to the National Fire Protection Association. In 2011, the latest year in which figures are available, cooking was involved in an estimated 156,300 home fires that caused 470 deaths, 5,390 injuries and $1 billion in property damage.

“These numbers could be greatly reduced if people paid more attention when they cooked and practiced simple fire safety behaviors,” a brochure reads. The brochure offers the following recipe for stopping kitchen fires before they start:

* Unattended cooking is the leading cause of kitchen fires. Keep an eye on what you fry;

* Stay alert to avoid stirring up trouble in the kitchen. Don’t use the oven or stovetop if you are sleep, have consumed alcohol or are using drugs;

* Make sure flammable objects aren’t near the stove. Clean up food and grease from burners and the stovetop, and war short, tight-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves;

* Prevent scalds and burns by keeping pot handles turned in; if you do suffer a burn, cool it under running water for three to five minutes and cover with a clean, dry cloth; and

* Be ready to react fast to a cooking fire. Slide a lid over a small grease fire, turn off the burner and leave the pan covered until it is completely cool. Open a microwaved container of food slowly, letting steam escape. For an oven or microwave fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

When in doubt, just get out, and call the Fire Department.

Enterprise staff

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