Fire Prevention Week brings safety tips
As Durham observes Fire Prevention Week, the city’s fire marshal urges residents to pay particular attention to safety in the kitchen, where many blazes break out.“I have seen a lot of kitchen fires, and a lot of them could have been prevented,” Fire Marshal Edward Reid said.
Reid said firefighters plan to visit Durham schools and other key locations to emphasize prevention.
He said the talks will focus on three ways to stay safe:
- Stand by your pan. Unattended cooking is dangerous and often causes home fires and injuries.
- Tighten up. Loose clothing can catch fire during cooking and accounts for “a significant percentage” of fire deaths, Reid said.
- Don’t be scalded. Microwaves heat and burn. Food being microwaved requires careful handling.
Reid also urged Durham residents to have at least one working smoke detector at home. They’re available free at any Durham fire station.
State Fire Marshal Wayne Goodwin said a third of the more than 8,100 homes fires in North Carolina last year were caused by people cooking.
Goodwin said people should say in the kitchen when they’re frying, grilling or broiling food and set a timer to remind them they’re using a stovetop or oven.
He also encouraged families to hold fire drills Wednesday to practice how they would respond if their home caught fire.
Fire Prevention Week, which continues through Saturday, commemorates the Great Chicago Fire of Oct. 10, 1871, that killed an estimated 300 people.