Many homeowners plan on having friends and family over during the holidays for dinner. If this is the case for you, then odds are you'll be preparing a feast that's a little more elaborate than what you typically make - especially if you are cooking for a large group of guests. One of the things that you should keep in mind as you go about this challenging task is fire safety. Almost half of all residential fires are caused by cooking accidents, after all. The following are seven kitchen fire safety tips that will help you reduce the risk of an accidental kitchen fire during the upcoming holidays:
1. Make sure the smoke alarm and CO detector both work
You should have a smoke alarm and a CO detector on the first floor near your kitchen. This way if a fire does break out, everyone in the house will be warned and have enough time to get out. Test both the alarm and the detector to make sure they work as they should and replace their batteries if needed.
2. Have easy access to a fire extinguisher
Since your kitchen does use heat extensively to cook food, you'll want to have easy access to a fire extinguisher in case something accidentally lights on fire. Cooking accidents can happen even if you think you're being careful - so be prepared.
3. Never leave the stove top on unattended
If you're cooking food on the stove, then you should never leave it unattended. If you need to leave the kitchen for a moment, have an adult come keep an eye on the food. During the holidays, you may have kids running around as well - you'll want to make sure they don't enter the kitchen if there's food on the stove top without the supervision of an adult.
4. Don't wear loose clothing
Loose clothing can easily catch fire - especially if you have multiple foods being cooked on your stove top. Always make sure you're dressed appropriately for the kitchen.
5. Keep the kids away
Tell the kids to keep at least three feet away from the stove. Even if you're present or another adult is present, a child could seriously hurt themselves if they knocked over a frying pan or a pot full of hot food. Kids are also inherently curious, and the last thing you want is for them to accidentally start a fire because they were playing with the knobs on your stove top.
6. Keep flammable objects away from the stove top
When using the stove, make sure the counter space around it is clear. Accidental fires happen all the time because paper towels, oven mitts or other flammable objects were laying too close to the open flame of a stove top.
7. Make sure you clean your cooking surfaces
Grease fires often occur because of a buildup of grease and food on the cooking surface. Clean your cooking surfaces regularly to avoid this.
The kitchen can be an overwhelming place to work during the holidays, so make sure that you keep these seven kitchen fire safety tips in mind.
Author: Benjamin Byron