This year’s theme for National Fire Safety Week is “Prevent Kitchen Fires.” Did you know the most likely place for a fire to occur in your home or apartment is your kitchen?
The LAFD responds to hundreds of fires in kitchens every year, and some of them result in the entire building being destroyed. These are needless fires that don’t need to occur. Check out these fast facts regarding fires in the kitchen:
- U.S. Fire Departments responded to an estimated annual average of 156,600 cooking-related fires between 2007-2011, resulting in 400 civilian deaths, 5,080 civilian injuries and $853 million in direct damage.
- Two of every five home fires start in the kitchen (yup, kitchen fires!).
- Unattended cooking was a factor in 34% of reported home cooking fires.
- Two-thirds of home cooking fires started with ignition of food or other cooking materials.
- Ranges accounted for the 58% of home cooking fire incidents. Ovens accounted for 16%.
- Children under five face a higher risk of non-fire burns associated with cooking than being burned in a cooking fire.
- Microwave ovens are one of the leading home products associated with scald burn injuries not related to fires. Nearly half (44%) of the microwave oven injuries seen at emergency rooms in 2011 were scald burns.
- Clothing was the item first ignited in less than 1% of home cooking fires, but these incidents accounted for 16% of the cooking fire deaths.
Fire Prevention Week evolved after the tragic Great Chicago Fire in 1871. That disastrous fire killed more than 250 people, destroyed more than 17,400 structures, and left 100,000+ people homeless.