South County Fire offers fire safety tips, holds scavenger hunt for Fire Prevention Week

In honor of Fire Prevention Week, South County Fire is teaming up with the National Fire Protection Association to promote this year’s theme, “Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen!”

According to South County Fire, cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries locally and nationally. Most kitchen fires are started by unattended cooking. Staying in the kitchen, using a timer and avoiding distractions such as electronics or television are steps everyone can take to prevent fires and stay safe.

To spread the word about fire safety in the kitchen, South County Fire is inviting families to participate in a Home Fire Safety Scavenger Hunt with Flat Sparky. Children can print, color and cut out a Flat Sparky, then take photos with Flat Sparky as they complete scavenger hunt activities. A Flat Sparky coloring sheet and the scavenger hunt checklist are available to download at southsnofire.org/FirePreventionWeek.

South County Fire is launching a free monthly home and fire safety class presented via Zoom teleconferencing. The first class will be Oct. 14 at 6 p.m. Advanced registration is required at southsnofire.org/education. Participants will need a computer, tablet or telephone with internet connection.

This class focuses on how to protect families and prevent home fires. Topics include an overview of the top causes of home fires and how to prevent them, placement and maintenance of alarms and other devices to protect families, steps to creating a home fire escape plan and what to do if a fire occurs in homes.

Kitchen fire safety tips

  • Never leave cooking food unattended. Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling or broiling. If you have to leave, even for a short time, turn off the stove.
  • When simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food, check it regularly. Remain in the home while food is cooking. Use a timer to set reminders for cooking.
  • Be alert when cooking. Do not cook when sleepy, after taking medicine or drugs, or consuming alcohol.
  • Always keep an oven mitt and pan lid nearby when cooking. If a small grease fire starts, slide the lid over the pan to smother the flame. Turn off the burner, and leave the pan covered until it is completely cool.
  • Have a “kid-free zone” of at least three feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.

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