Lowcountry fire districts showcase cooking fire safety tips

Lowcountry fire districts showcase cooking fire safety tips

BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WTOC) - Sunday, Oct. 4, kicks off national Fire Prevention Week. To start that education the Burton and Bluffton Fire Districts teamed up to show people the best way to deal with the most common fire: cooking fires.

Fire safety in the kitchen starts with the three feet rule. So that means, anything in your kitchen that’s flammable should be at least three feet away from your stove. That means your oven mitt, your cooking oil, and your rags.

One thing that should be close, though, is your fire extinguisher.

“I’ll tell you, particularly in our neck of the woods, we have seen a number of calls for fires. Now they have an all thankfully materialize to be legitimate fires,” said Lee Levesque, with Bluffton Fire.

The Bluffton Fire District has seen an increase in calls in recent months. They say part of the reason is quarantine induced cooking.

“The number one issue when it comes to kitchen fires and cooking fires is unattended cooking,” Levesque said.

The department says while they love people are cooking for themselves more, one mistake may lead to fiery accidents.

"The key is to pay attention to what you are doing. If you must leave for whatever reason, using the bathroom, a phone call, to attend to children, turn it off. "

The two fire district say they were expecting the same rise but did not see a dramatic increase. Either way, the two departments teamed up to display how common kitchen fires can be taken care of quickly.

They suggest you always keep a pan lid nearby and have a fire extinguisher ready. But they also showed what you should not do

“Throwing water on a fire is absolutely not a good idea. It spreads the fire as opposed to putting it out.”

They are also encouraging families to educate children in the next week.

"Children are smart. Particularly my own- a lot more intelligent than we give them credit for. So, giving them information and the ability, or more importantly, our approval to be fire safe in their home is absolutely a critical component. "

Because keeping the family safe, is the most important thing.

“But all of the shopping that my daughters have forced me to do I have never been able to find a new medicine. Or a new Kristen. Or a new Phillip. Those are my children. They are not for sale anywhere, but I can buy a new house, buy a new chair, all that stuff. The key is simply, get out.”

The department also says as we enter winter months you need to make sure you are not using your oven as a heat source and that you are checking the batteries in your fire alarms to make sure your family stays safe.

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