Beaufort declares war on kitchen fires for fire prevention week - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Beaufort Fire Dept. declares war on kitchen fires

(Source: Beaufort-Port Royal Fire Department) (Source: Beaufort-Port Royal Fire Department)
BEAUFORT CO., SC (WTOC) -

Beaufort is launching a war on kitchen fires for fire prevention week. 

Fire officials say more than half the structural fires in Beaufort during the past 12 months have started in the kitchen, well above the national average.

In the past 12 months the Beaufort-Port Royal Fire Department has responded to 26 reported fires in buildings. Of those, 14 originated in the kitchen. 

 Here are the key messages about preventing home fires:

  • Pay Attention : Every fire that originated in a kitchen was preventable.  The leading cause of kitchen fires is unattended cooking.  The chef forgot the burner was on, became distracted, or turned on the wrong burner. 
  • Have working smoke alarms: Smoke alarms do not prevent fire, but they provide the early warning necessary to save lives and limit property damage.  Have smoke alarms, test them regularly and replace the batteries at least annually.  Smoke alarms save lives!
  • Use extension cords properly: Nationally, half of all fires involve electrical wiring and appliances.   Most of them are caused by improper use.  That's especially important with the holidays approaching. If you use electrical decorations for Halloween, use the proper type of extension cord.
  • Candles : Open flames start 35 fires every day in the United States.  If you must burn a candle, do it in a safe place, away from other combustibles, and in an approved container. Always be sure the candles are extinguished before leaving the house!
  • Smoking materials: Improperly extinguished smoking materials result in 17,500 structure fires and over 500 deaths every year in the United States.  Don't become a statistic.  Use proper ash containers and extra care. 

There are many more ways to prevent fire in your homes and business. For those interested in speaking to a fire prevention specialist, contact the Beaufort-Port Royal Fire Department at 843.525.7055 or by e-mail at city-fire@cityofbeaufort.org.

Copyright 2012 WTOC. All rights reserved.

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