People across South Yorkshire are being urged to stand by their pans as part of a new safety campaign that aims to drive down cooking fires.
This comes as South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue reveals it has attended over 1,000 cooking related incidents in the last four years – with cooking being a leading cause of accidental house fire.
The latest campaign, which will be running across Christmas and into the New Year, urges people to resist the temptation to leave the room and get distracted whilst cooking.
It is being launched today, Friday 22 November, with the help of pupils at Mosborough Primary School in Sheffield – who have starred in a brand new flagship campaign video.
“We know that cooking is the leading cause of house fire in South Yorkshire. That is a fact and is something we want to change,” said Area Manager Simon Dunker, head of the joint police and fire community safety department.
“It was responsible for half of all accidental house fires last year. Many of these incidents could have been prevented by taking some really simple steps.
“We’re not asking a lot, as we know people lead busy lives, but literally standing by your pan can reduce the chance you’re going to have a kitchen fire.
“In turn, that reduces the chances that you, or the kids, are going to get hurt. Or, as a more common outcome, that you are going to have to fork out thousands of pounds for a new kitchen.”
Firefighters are offering three key bits of advice as part of the campaign:
- Never leave the room whilst you are cooking food
- Keep your oven clean and don’t leave stuff on top, or inside
- Test your smoke alarms!
As part of the planning process, the service analysed a random selection of cooking fires from across South Yorkshire.
Out of those looked at, over half involved food being left on too long and forgotten about. A smoke logged kitchen, and damaged equipment, was the most common outcome.
Other causes involved stuff being left on top of the hob, dirty ovens or chip pans.