Households in the capital are being reminded of the dangers of chip pans and traditional fat fryers as the London Fire Brigade uses National Chip Week to publish new statistics showing that chip pans still cause hundreds of fires across London each year.
According to the Brigade’s statistics, which have been taken from the last five years, around 2500 accidental fires in Londoners’ homes were caused by chip pans, around 70% of people who are injured in fires in the home are injured by fires that start in the kitchen and 16% of people who die in accidental home fires, die as a result of kitchen fires.
Andy Hickmott, London Fire Brigade’s Assistant Commissioner for Community Safety said: “People need to exercise extreme caution when using chip pans and fat fryers. The hot fat can easily catch fire, especially if you leave the pan unattended. A safer option would be to have oven chips or get a takeaway”.
The Brigade is also using National Chip Week to remind Londoners of the importance of fitting a smoke alarm. Hickmott warned “You are more than twice as likely to die in a fire at home if you haven’t got a smoke alarm. Smoke alarms alert you to the danger of fire, giving you precious time to escape. They are cheap as chips, easy to get hold of and easy to fit”.
The Brigade offers the following chip pan safety advice:
Think about replacing your chip pan with an electric fryer – they are safer to use.
If you have to use a chip pan never fill it more than a third full with oil or fat. • Don’t use youra chip pan if you’ve been drinking alcohol. • Never leave the pan unattended with the heat on – not even for a few seconds. • Never put the chips in the pan if the oil has started smoking. Turn off the heat and leave the oil to cool down, or else it could catch fire.
If your does pan catch fire:
Don’t panic and don’t take risks.
• Don’t move the pan.
• Never throw water or use a fire extinguisher on a hot fat fire.
• If it’s safe to do so – turn off the heat, but never lean over the pan to reach the controls.
• Leave the kitchen, close the door behind you, tell everyone else in the home to get out and don’t go back inside for any reason. Call 999
For more home fire safety advice, please visit www.london-fire.gov.uk/yoursafety.asp