How safe are you in the kitchen? Fire Service launches Kitchen Safety campaign

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) is launching a new kitchen safety campaign to raise awareness of the fire risks that are present in the kitchen – and more importantly how to avoid them.

More fires originate in the kitchen than any other room in the home. Quite often it can be down to human error, when people might become distracted or fall asleep in another room or forget that their oven needs a good clean on a regular basis.

The main causes of kitchen fires are:

  • People becoming distracted and leaving pans and cooking unattended
  • Overfilling chip pans
  • Not cleaning ovens, hobs or grill pans
  • Plugging in too many appliances and overloading your sockets
  • Tiredness, through taking medicine that makes you drowsy
  • Drinking alcohol and cooking
  • Carelessness by leaving items such as tea towels near a naked flame

In addition, TWFRS will be raising awareness of the dangers of wearing loose clothing whilst cooking, especially amongst communities who wear traditional headscarves.

Lynsey McVay, Area Manager – Community Safety commented:

“We had 316 kitchen fires last year. Whilst deaths from house fires are thankfully rare, each one robs a family of someone they love and care about. It is our job  to try and stop it from happening in the first place and we hope this campaign will help us do that.”

In addition the campaign will also provide advice on what to do if a fire occurs, or if clothes catch on fire – as well as the importance of responding to a smoke alarm that’s going off, whether it’s yours or your neighbours.

The Usual Suspects line up

Lynsey continued:

“The kitchen tends to be the central hub of many homes, where we cook, eat and sometimes just sit round for a chat. Therefore it’s up to all of us to make sure it’s a safe place by being more focussed when we cook – especially when there are naked flames present and by having that glass of wine with the meal and not whilst we are making it.

We are launching the campaign in the same week as Shrove Tuesday, when we know many families will making pancakes together and therefore it’s an ideal opportunity to talk to our children about keeping safe in the kitchen. ”

The Kitchen Safety campaign will be run on the TWFRS’ social media channels, while their prevention and educations teams will be out in the community providing home safety advice.