Cooking fires are the leading cause of residential fires and associated injuries across the nation. The NFPA reported that during the years 2003 – 2006, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 150,200 cooking fires per year. These fires cause annual average of 4,660 civilian injuries, 500 civilian deaths and $756 million in direct property Damage. Unattended cooking was the leading contributing factor. During the years 2007 – 2009, the Independence Fire Department responded to 86 residential cooking fires.
To help prevent cooking fires please follow these simple and effective tips:
- Stay in the kitchen. Unattended cooking is the primary cause of kitchen fire.
- Wear clothes that fit. Loose fitting clothing can catch fire.
- Keep the stove and oven clean. Grease and food build up can catch fire.
- Have a 3 foot “no-go-zone” for children. When they are older, teach fire safety.
- Turn handle inward. This will prevent spills and injuries.
In the event of a kitchen / cooking fire you should know what to do:
- When in doubt, get out. If you are unsure of your abilities, remove yourself from the home and call 911 from a safe phone.
- Purchase a kitchen rated fire extinguisher.
- For small fires, cover the item with a lid and turn off the heat source.
- For oven fires, keep the door closed and turn off the heat source.
- For microwave fires, keep the door closed and unplug it if possible.
According to the Lohud Journal News, “More than 30 Carmel residents can’t return to their homes after a fire ripped through a senior citizen housing complex early Tuesday morning. No residents were injured in the fire at Hughson Commons on Gables Way, but 32 of them were displaced,” Red Cross spokeswoman Abigail Adams said.
Pick up the paper or turn on the news. About 45 house fires are reported every hour in the U.S., and 60 percent of apartment fires are started by cooking equipment. More than 12 million unintentional home cooking fires go unreported causing 640,000 injuries annually. It just takes minutes for a fire to start https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d2FCgtlITUM.
Unfortunately, many fire injuries and deaths are among those over 50. As we age, poor hearing and vision, as well as health problems affecting mobility contribute to putting mature adults in the highest risk group for cooking fires. In addition to the destruction of property estimated at $7 billion per year in the U.S. alone, the National Fire Protection Association reports that 43 percent of people who have died in cooking fires were asleep at the time. It’s easy to see that the growing baby boomer populations is at higher risk because they generally fall asleep early and are more forgetful.
According to US News, between 2000 and 2010, the number of people age 65 to 84 in the U.S. grew by 3.3 million, and the 40 million senior citizens in 2012 will balloon to 89 million by 2050.
This a wakeup call to not just those who live alone or with a spouse now that the kids have grown and moved out, but also for those in the senior housing industry, and the adult children who care for elderly parents. Developers spend millions building beautiful retirement communities with many amenities that cater to people over 50, but do not consider that distraction, forgetfulness and memory loss can pose significant dangers to the residents who cook. We increase cooking safety by requiring that all new senior housing requires, at the very least, a range top suppression system in both private apartments and community kitchens.
Further, with the recession and the concurrent reduction in fire fighter staff seen in cities big and small, it would be equally smart to stop fires before they start. States should require mandatory range top suppression equipment in new buildings or remodels just like sprinklers and earthquake shut-off valves are.
In the meantime, there are some safety precautions that boomers can take to prevent cooking fires:
- Never leave cooking unattended. A serious fire can start in just seconds.
- Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen and practice using it.
- Have a pot cover close by to put out a cooking fire quickly.
- Wipe up spills from the stove which could catch fire.
- Always wear short or tight-fitting sleeves when you cook.
- Keep towels, pot holders and curtains away from flames.
- Don’t overfill pans with grease or cooking oil.
- Never use the range or oven to heat your home.
- Double-check the kitchen before you go to bed or leave the house.
- Never leave the kitchen to answer the door, grab the telephone, or change clothes while something is cooking without shutting the gas or electricity off.
- It is dangerous to cook while on certain prescription medications or drinking alcohol.
For more information on the Carmel fire, read this http://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/putnam/carmel/2016/11/15/fire-carmel-senior-complex/93875012/
A fire at a sprawling senior assisted living facility led officials to evacuate nearly 60 residents on Sunday morning, police said.
Jackson police Capt. Steven Laskiewicz said no one was injured in the blaze, which started at 7:15 a.m. and was contained to the third floor.
However, the fire caused an evacuation of Bella Terra assisted living facility, located at 2 Kathleen Drive. Laskiewicz said 33 residents were taken to Jackson Liberty High School, while family members picked up another 26 residents. In all, 44 rooms were evacuated.
The Bella Terra staff is working on a long-term housing plan for the residents, who lived in Building D.
Jackson police and firefighters from Jackson Mills Fire Company and Jackson Station 55 were the first to arrive on the scene. The flames were quickly extinguished by the sprinkler system, Laskiewicz said.
The sprinklers caused flooding in one of the stairwells, police said.
More than 20 police, fire and EMS agencies from Ocean and Monmouth counties assisted at the scene.
It’s unclear how the fire started. It remained under investigation as of Sunday morning.
The fire does not appear to be suspicious, Laskiewicz said.
Date: Tuesday, July 19, 2016 Time: 2:00 – 3:00 p.m. EDT
Click link to register http://bit.ly/29o8j2J
FEMA’s Individual and Community Preparedness Division (ICPD) invites you to a webinar on Tuesday, July 19, featuring ways houses of worship and emergency managers can use training programs like Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) to increase community preparedness. The webinar also highlights how these partnerships improve engagements with diverse communities and populations.
Guardian’s products are designed to detect and extinguish fires and prevent re-ignition in houses of worship. The new Guardian G600 is the only current listed system designed to work with an over the stove microwave. Benefits of Guardian systems include automatic operation, continuous 24-hour protection, concealed installation, easy clean-up and proven reliability. For end users, Guardian Fire Suppression Systems offer substantial savings over a traditional commercial system.
Guardian Fire Suppression Systems have been used and supported in more than 400,000 installations worldwide and have been UL listed since 1985. For more information, contact GSSI at 800-786-2178 or visit www.guardianssi.com. “Like” Guardian on Facebook at GuardianSSI and follow on Twitter @GuardianSSI.
Sadly, while lives were lost and additional people were injured in this Toronto fire, it was not caused by cooking. That said, it points out how important it is for senior housing to have laws and regulations to protect these elderly people from fires that are so destruction. Zoning laws, construction laws and training must be increased and secured throughout the US and Canada.
This couple married 51 years did not survive.
According to TCH records, the building was last inspected for fire safety in 2013. Under the Fire Code, buildings that are classified as seniors homes must undergo annual fire inspections. However, the building on Nielson Road caters to people 59 years old and older, but is not classified as a seniors home and thus does not have to pass the same, strict provincial fire regulations as a seniors or retirement homes.
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Guardian system prevents these fires! Commercial building housed catering company kitchen. Word is that this commercial building housed a catering company kitchen that provides school lunches. It took 250 Brooklyn firefighters several hours to get the blaze under control. The Guardian system could have prevented this terrible fire.