Safety suggestions for holiday cooking from South County Fire and Rescue

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(Photo courtesy South County Fire & Rescue)

According to the South County Fire and Rescue, kitchen fires are the most common type in Snohomish County and nationwide — and not surprisingly, many of these occur during the holidays. Unattended cooking was the primary source of cooking fires and fire deaths and cooking equipment was involved in almost half (48 percent) of all reported home fires. Here are some tips from the South County Fire and Rescue when cooking during the holidays:

Kitchen safety tips:

  • Kitchen fires can start spreading in seconds. Stay in the kitchen while cooking, especially when cooking with grease or cooking food at high temperatures.
  • Be sure electronic cords from electric knives, coffee makers, plate warmers and mixers are not hanging off of the counter within reach of small children.
  • When using the stove, wear tight-fitting clothes or rolled up sleeves. Loose-fitting or dangling clothing can easily catch fire.
  • Keep combustible items like dishcloths, potholders and paper towels away from stovetops.

Stovetop fires – Put a lid on it!

  • Keep proper-fitting lids close by for each pot or pan you have on the stovetop. If a pot or pan catches fire, put a lid on it to smother the flames.
  • Do not attempt to move a flaming pot or pan away from the stove, as that may fan the flames and spread the fire.
  • Never try to put a grease fire out with water. If possible, cover the pan with a lid to smother the flames — use baking soda on shallow grease fires.
  • If you cannot control the fire immediately, get yourself and your family out fast and call 911.

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