Every year, the Airdrie Fire Department (AFD) reminds residents of important safety tips during Fire Prevention Week.
Starting on Oct. 4, the theme of the week-long campaign is “Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen!” The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week for more than 90 years, has partnered with the AFD to promote this message.
The aim of the campaign is to educate the public about the steps that can be taken to keep their families safe by preventing fires in their own homes, especially in the kitchen.
In Canada, cooking is the leading cause of home fires with most starting from the ignition of food or other materials in the kitchen.
“A cooking fire can grow quickly,” said Chief Kevin Weinberger at the AFD.
“I have seen many homes damaged and people injured by fires that could easily have been prevented.”
To prevent a kitchen fire, never leave cooking food unattended. Stay in the kitchen while frying, grilling, or broiling food. If you have to leave, even for a short time, turn off the stove.
Remain in your home while food is simmering, baking, roasting, or boiling. Check on it regularly, and use a timer as a reminder.
It’s also important to stay alert when cooking. Avoid distractions such as using electronics or watching television. Don’t cook when you are sleepy or when you have taken medicine, drugs, or alcohol that causes drowsiness.
Always keep an oven mitt and pan lid nearby while cooking. If a small grease fire starts, cover the flames with the pan lid to smother it. Turn off the burner, and leave it covered until completely cool.
To prevent any accidents or burns, maintain a “kid-free zone” of at least one metre around the stove and any other areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.
To support the message of the Fire Prevention Week campaign, the AFD is providing some online resources for how to “Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen!”
There will also be a draw to win fire safety equipment. Families are encouraged to enter by printing off and colouring an image of Sparky and taking a photo practicing fire safety in their own homes.
To find out more about the full contest details and more Fire Prevention Week resources, please visit airdrie.ca/firepreventionweek, or contact the Airdrie Fire Department at [email protected] or by calling 403-948-8800.
For more general information about fire prevention, visit www.fpw.org.