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Bend FD offers advice to avoid holiday cooking fires


The holiday season is a time for people to gather and share food, gifts and joy. The Bend Fire Department wants people to ensure that safety in the kitchen is a top priority, since there can be more people, children, pets and distractions for those who are cooking. A fire during the holidays will ruin an otherwise joyous event.

Nationally, there are about 175,000 cooking fires annually, causing 530 deaths and about $1.1 billion in direct damage. There is a spike of cooking fires during the holidays, where the incidence nearly doubles the annual daily average.

The main causes of cooking fires are: cooking unattended; food catching fire; and other combustible items (towels, oven mitts, packaging) too close to the heat. Although clothing ignition is rare, this kind of fire is more likely to be fatal.

Always stay in the kitchen when cooking, keep kids and pets away from the stove, ensure that anything combustible is well away from the range, always positively confirm that you have turned off the burners, keep a 3-foot kid and pet-free zone around the kitchen stove, and keep the cooking area clean and free of packaging, etc.

The National Fire Protection Association has some excellent tips on kitchen and cooking fire safety, and they can be found here:

The Bend Fire Department and the Deschutes Rural Fire Protection District #2 wish our community a safe and fire-free, happy, healthy and peaceful holiday season.

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