This week is Fire Safety Week! This observance has its roots in the Great Chicago Fire, which occurred on October 9, 1871 and in two days destroyed half of the existing city and left 300 dead and 100,000 homeless. While we have better safety procedures today, it’s important to be educated about fire safety and prevention. This year the focus is on preventing kitchen fires.
However, did you know that half of all home fires are caused by faulty wiring?
In the spirit of fire safety and prevention, here are some tips to observe Fire Safety Week:
According to the National Fire Protection Association, having functioning smoke detectors cuts the risk of dying in a fire in half.
2. Create an escape plan.
Draw a map of your home and identify all the doors and windows. Teach children how to escape through windows in case the situation calls for it and practice the plan both in daytime and nighttime.
3. Address any wiring concerns.
Since this year’s Fire Safety Week focus is on kitchen fires, here are a list of safety tips to preventing kitchen fires.
- Do all frying, grilling, broiling, or boiling food in the kitchen!
- If you must leave kitchen during cooking, even for a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- Regularly check anything that is simmering, baking, or roasting food, and use a timer to remind you.
- If you have young children, use the stove’s back burners whenever possible. Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the stove.
- Watch your sleeves when you cook. Try to wear tight-fitting ones if possible or roll them up.
- Keep potholders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper and plastic bags, towels, and anything else that can burn, away from the stovetop.
- Clean up food and grease from burners and stovetops.
- Store a fire extinguisher near the kitchen exit and learn ahead of time how to operate the extinguisher. Remember that fire extinguishers are never a substitute for calling the fire department, even if a fire is small.