GREASE FIRE DANGERS
Cooking causes over 170,000 home structure fires annually, and is considered to be the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. Of the annual number of fires started in the kitchen, over 70% of the fires were started by food or other cooking materials. Often these fires are ignited by grease.
Tips to prevent grease fires:
- Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling, boiling or broiling food. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking.
- Keep anything that can catch fire away from your stovetop.
- Remove as much moisture as possible from the food you are cooking, before putting it in hot oil.
- Keep the grease at the recommended temperature. If you see any smoke or the oil smells, it is an indication that the grease has become too hot and is burning.
- Keep a lid near the pan you’re cooking with so that it is accessible if a fire starts, quickly place on the pan to prevent spread, and extinguish the fire.
In addition to these tips, it is also a good practice to be mindful of times grease fires are more likely to occur. Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires, followed by Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
By using proper cooking techniques and best practices, frying with grease or oil should pose a relatively small risk. Quick and proper reaction will minimize any damage and prevent injury.