FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Springfield Fire Department has responded to seven grease cooking fires, six of those in residential homes, during the first quarter of 2021. During 2020, grease fires accounted for 28% of all residential cooking fires, closely followed by unattended cooking. Below are safety tips to keep in mind when cooking with oil:
- Always stay in the kitchen when frying on the stovetop.
- Keep an eye on what you fry. If you see wisps of smoke or the oil smells, immediately turn off the burner and/or carefully remove the pan from the burner. Smoke is a danger sign that the oil is too hot.
- Heat the oil slowly to the temperature you need for frying or sautéing.
- Add food gently to the pot or pan so the oil does not splatter.
- Do not attempt to move the pot or pan outside.
- Always cook with a lid beside your pan. If you have a fire, slide the lid over the pan and turn off the burner. Do not remove the cover because the fire could start again. Let the pan cool for a long time. Never throw water on a grease fire.
- If the fire does not go out or you don’t feel comfortable sliding a lid over the pan, get everyone out of your home. Call 9-1-1 from outside.
“A fire can double in size every 30 seconds and you may have little time to get out,” reminds Chief David Pennington. “Everyone in the home should have a well-practiced escape plan and know two ways out. The Fire Department will arrive quickly during an emergency, but there are steps we need you to take during those vital first few minutes.”
The Fire Department provides free smoke alarms to Springfield residents, and may be requested by calling Fire Department Headquarters at 417-874-2300 or by email to [email protected]..
For media only: For more information, call the Springfield Fire Department media line at 417-874-2301.