Did you know that cooking is the primary cause of fires and firerelated injuries in the home?

Most cooking fires are sparked by common household items like curtains, towels and paper bags. Some of the most likely events to causes open-flame fires include food being left to cook unattended, combustibles being placed too close to the flame and equipment not being turned off (or accidentally turned on). To help keep you safe in the kitchen, here are five safety tips for using open-flame equipment:

  1. Never leave open flames unattended

Open flames can be very dangerous. Once they start, they can spread very quickly, turning out of control in seconds. Intervention is crucial in these early moments. If you’re cooking on the stovetop, avoid walking away to other parts of the house and never leave the home no matter what, even it seems safe enough to do so.

  1. Keep your cooking area clear

Remember: clutter is combustible. Always ensure you’re cooking area is clean. Never put food packaging, rubbish, towels or oil too close to the fire source. Ensure you have your hair out of your face and avoid wearing loose clothing that could catch alight. Also, be careful with dangly jewellery. While metal might not be combustible, your bracelets can get caught on pot handles and knock a pot off the stove.

  1. Monitor children and pets

Children and pets are a major hazard when open flames are burning. Be sure to monitor them constantly if you’re cooking, ensuring they stay well away from the oven or cooktop. Even if you’re not cooking near children and pets, you should make a habit of turning your pot handles inward – this helps avoid them accidentally knocking the pan and causing an accident.

  1. Don’t use water to put out fat or oil-based fires

Water is not effective at putting out fires caused by oils and fats. In fact, it can make the fire even worse. If you’re attempting to put out a blaze sparked by oils or fats, you will need to use a fire blanket or a Class F Wet Chemical fire extinguisher (these have a tan coloured band on them).

  1. Buy the right fire extinguisher and learn how to use it

Having a fire extinguisher is not enough. You will also need the right extinguisher. Don’t forget, fire extinguishers are not a one size fits all – there are six different fire extinguisher classes in Australia. As demonstrated above, adherence to these classes is crucial. Also, having the right equipment is pointless if you don’t know how to use it correctly – you should ensure you’re fully trained in using your equipment. Learn more about fire extinguisher training here.

Further resources

Ready to purchase fire equipment to make your kitchen safer? Fire Equipment Online is here to help. Our team of highly-qualified experts will help find the most affordable and most well-suited solution for you, no matter how unique your requirements may be. Contact us today for more information.