Faribault Fire Chief Has Cooking Safety Tips

Thanksgiving is the peak day for cooking fires according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Dustin Denst, Faribault’s head of firefighting, told KDHL AM Minnesota listeners today that it’s “frustrating” because cooking fires are completely preventable.

The main cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking as most cooking fires involve a kitchen stove.

Roughly 50% of all home fires are cooking fires. The following main causes are heating equipment (12.5%) and electrical faults (6.3%).

There is a house fire in this country every 87 seconds.

Faribault Fire Chief suggests people stay in the kitchen when cooking to keep an eye on things. The NFPA says if you leave the kitchen even for a short period of time, you should turn off the stove.

Denst suggested several times that there should be nothing combustible near the stove. Oven gloves, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, and curtains.

The NFPA suggests a “child-free area” of at least 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.

Keep the kitchen floor clean so you don’t trip over children, toys, pocketbooks, or bags.

Make sure that the electrical wires from the electric knife, coffee maker, dish warmer, blender, etc… are not hanging from the table within reach of a child (or pet).

Keep knives out of children’s reach. Of course this is good advice all year round.

Make sure smoke alarms are working. If you are hosting a pool, hit the test button.

The NFPA says you should have activities for the kids to do to keep them out of the kitchen. Games, puzzles, or books keep them occupied. Kids can get involved in Thanksgiving preparations with recipes that can be made out of the kitchen.

Denst says that frying turkeys can be dangerous if you don’t pay attention to what you’re doing.

Below is a podcast of the show that we recommend listening to if you haven’t had a chance to hear it live so you have a safe Thanksgiving.

If you have a small cooking fire (grease) and decide to fight the fire… Put out the flames on the stove by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the stove. Leave the pan covered until completely cool.

If there is a fire in the oven, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

If you have any doubts about fighting a small fire, get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire. Call 9-1-1 or your local emergency number from outside the home.

  • According to NFPA statistics, more than 3,000 Americans die in fires each year.
  • At least one child dies every day from a house fire.
  • On average, 358,500 homes experience a house-structure fire each year.

If you ever need to use a fire extinguisher, remember the PASS instructions.

  • P-Pull the Pin
  • A – Aim low on the base of the fire
  • Press the handle slowly
  • Wipe the nozzle from side to side

We’ve also touched on Christmas lights and Christmas tree safety.

Denst says the Faribault Fire Department hopes everyone stays safe this holiday season.

Listen to the program’s podcast below.

Here is more information from the NFPA.

Can you guess most of these?

Check it out: See America’s 100 Most Famous Brands

Since we are discussing food.

Keep Reading: 3-Ingredient Recipes You Can Make Right Now

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