DENVER - Be alert, stay in the kitchen and keep flammable items away from the stovetop-these cooking safety tips may seem like common sense but cooking fires are the leading cause of home fires and home injuries in the U.S.
"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," according to the National Fire Protection Association.
Out of those cooking-related fires, unattended cooking was a factor in 34 percent of home cooking fires.
Because of those statistics, from Oct. to Oct. 12 firefighters across the U.S. are taking the time to remind the public about how to prevent kitchen fires during the 88th annual National Fire Protection Association's Fire Prevention Week.
Cook with caution
Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, grilling or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
If you are simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
Keep anything that can catch fire - oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains -away from your stovetop.
If you have a cooking fire
Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
Call 911 after you leave.
Download a flyer of these NFPA safety tips on cooking
Fire Prevention Week is the longest running public health and safety observance on record. The President of the United States has signed a proclamation proclaiming a national observance during that week every year since 1925, according to the National Archives and Records
Administration's Library Information Center.
Click here for Captain Evan Soibelman's Tri-Colored-Tortilla-Crusted Salmonwith Black Bean and Corn Salsa recipe.
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