Fire Prevention Week 2023 theme announced: ‘Cooking safety starts with YOU!’
The NFPA reports that nearly half of all home fires involve cooking equipment
By Bill Carey
BOSTON — The NFPA has announced "Cooking safety starts with YOU! Pay attention to fire prevention" as the theme for Fire Prevention Week 2023, to be held Oct. 8-14.
According to the NFPA, the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week:
- Cooking is the leading cause of home fires, with nearly half of all home fires involving cooking equipment.
- Cooking is the leading cause of home fire injuries.
- Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires and related deaths.
- Cooking is the only major cause of fire that resulted in more fires and fire deaths in 2014-2018 than in 1980-1984.
“These numbers tell us that more public awareness is needed around when and where cooking hazards exist, along with ways to prevent them,” said Lorraine Carli, vice president of the Outreach and Advocacy at NFPA. “This year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign will work to promote tips, guidelines, and recommendations that can help significantly reduce the risk of having a cooking fire.”
This year’s focus on cooking safety aims to educate the public about simple but important steps they can take to help reduce the risk of fire when cooking at home.
The following are cooking safety messages that support this year’s theme, “Cooking safety starts with YOU! Pay attention to fire prevention” – important messages fire departments can share with community members:
- Always keep a close eye on what you are cooking. For foods with longer cooking times, such as those that are simmering or baking, set a timer to help monitor them carefully.
- Clear the cooking area of combustible items and keep anything that can burn, such as dish towels, oven mitts, food packaging, and paper towels.
- Turn pot handles toward the back of the stove. Keep a lid nearby when cooking. If a small grease fire starts, slide the lid over the pan and turn off the burner.
- Create a “kid and pet-free zone” of at least three feet (one meter) around the cooking area and anywhere else hot food or drink is prepared or carried.
Learn more about Fire Prevention Week at firepreventionweek.org.