Maryland State Fire Marshal
Martin O’MalleyWilliam E.BarnardGovernor State FireMarshal
STATE FIRE MARSHAL OFFERS SAFE COOKING “RECIPES” FOR THANKSGIVING
PIKESVILLE, MD (November 19, 2008)
Year after year, many homes are damaged andresidents are injured as a result of cooking related fires. As the holidays bring a heightenedemphasis on cooking, the State Fire Marshal wants everyone to enjoy a safe holiday – stay in thekitchen while they're preparing hot food. In six out of seven incidents in a study of home cookingfires conducted by the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association), ignition occurred while thecook was out of the kitchen.
"Cooking fires remain one of the toughest problems we face,"
said the State FireMarshal. Distraction and forgetfulness are the key reasons why devices intended to cook or warm up food start a fire. In many cases, the cook is in another room; typically because he or sheforgot that something was cooking or was distracted by children, phone calls, visitors, televisionor other interruptions.People often try to put out cooking fires on their own, and most cooking fire injuriesoccurred while fighting the fire. With cooking fires, the safest response is not what may firstcome to mind. Using a fire extinguisher inappropriately or applying water increases the risk of splattering and spreading the fire. A safer choice is to smother the fire by covering a pan with alid or closing the oven door.The State Fire Marshal advises these safety “recipes” during cooking:
Don't leave cooking food unattended
Roll up sleeves and don't wear loose clothing
Keep pot handles turned inward to avoid spills
Keep potholders, dishtowels, food packaging and other clutter off the stovetop
Clean cooking equipment; built-up grease can catch fire
1201 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville, MD 21208 800-525-3124