Kitchen Fire Safety

Even though we spend a great deal of time in our kitchen, it is not the safest room in the home. Cooking fires are the #1 cause of home fires and home fire injuries in Minnesota. Nationally cooking fires cause hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries each year. These fires are usually preventable. 

But what can we do about it?

  1. Learn the hazards in your kitchen.
  2. Learn how to reduce and minimize them.
  3. Learn how to react properly when things go wrong.
  4. Learn about burns and how to care for them.


Start by making a commitment to being aware of your surroundings and setting a good example. This will help you and others change unsafe behaviors you may not even be know you have.

  • Keeping it clean
  • Keep cooking areas clean of grease and oil buildup
  • Keep cooking areas clear of combustibles such as potholders, towels, rags, food packaging, etc.
  • Don't use stovetop, oven or microwave as a countertop or storage

While cooking…

  • Keep children and pets 3 feet from appliances
  • Never leave cooking unattended
  • Keep panhandles turned inward where they cannot be spilled
  • Wear tight fitting sleeves, and don't reach across burners

When things go wrong…

  • Remain calm
  • For a pan fire, while wearing an oven mitt slide a lid over the pan and turn off the stove - let the pan cool completely before moving it
  • For an oven fire, keep the door closed and turn off the oven, then unplug
  • For a microwave fire, keep the door closed and unplug the oven
  • Have a 2.5, 5 or 10 lb. ABC fire extinguisher mounted near the exit
  • If the fire has not grown beyond the area in which it started, use your fire extinguisher following the PASS method
  • Pull the pin, Aim at the fire, Squeeze the handle, and Sweep back and forth

Calling for help…

  • Get out and close the door behind you
  • Call 911 from the neighbors home or your cell phone
  • Make sure everyone is out of the house and accounted for

Types of burns…

  • First degree burns are skin that has only it's outer layer harmed and feels much like that of a mild sunburn.
  • Second degree burns appear swollen and blistered because several layers of the skin have been burned.
  • Third degree burns are where all layers and perhaps underlying tissue has been burned.

Caring for burns…

  • If the skin is unbroken such as in a first or second degree burns, cool water can be run over the area to remove heat. However, if the skin is broken such as in a third degree burn, apply a dry sterile dressing over the wound and seek immediate medical attention.

Cooking Fires 2020