Fire Rescue Offers Tips For Holiday Cooking Safety

SFFR: One-Third Of Yearly Structure Fires Come From Cooking Accidents

Last night, a fire destroyed a home near Harrisburg, displacing a family.

Officials say a propane hose broke from a grill, starting the fire.

Sioux Falls Fire Inspector John Wagner said concerns with a propane connection can be solved with soapy water.

“If you see bubbles coming up from the connection, that means there is a loose fitting and it needs to be tightened down more,” said Wagner.

Wagner said that one-third of the yearly structure fires they respond to are due to cooking accidents.

During the holidays, he said they see an uptick in cooking accident fires.

He offered a few small tips for homeowners that can make a big difference.

“Always keep a lid handy. Just put a lid over the top of the pan and that pan being there will help smother the fire and put it out.”

“Turn off the oven, or the stove, some people have control in the front, some have in the back. If you feel safe to, slide the pan to a cool burner and just let it sit and cool off.”

“If, by chance, you don’t have a lid handy, you can use anything that can cover the top of the pan such as a cookie sheet. You slide it above the top and that does the same thing as a lid, smothering the fire. You can also take baking soda or even a bigger pan if you have one to cover up that pan,” said Wagner.

In the event of a grease fire, Wagner said to never throw water on it.

With water, the grease fire can splash and spread, risking the fire spreading or injury.

Another key precaution Wagner warns about is to make sure the smoke alarm is working.

A home that caught fire in Sioux Falls Tuesday did not have an alarm, as a passerby saw flames coming out of the building.

Despite no one being home at the time of the fire, Wagner said if the passerby didn’t notice the fire; the result could’ve been a lot worse.

“They are life savers. We have had people that have had fires in their house that hadn’t had smoke alarms and because they didn’t they weren’t warned in time,” said Wagner.

He also said to keep a spatula or oven pad in your hand if you leave a fire unattended.

He said that can help remind you that there is food currently on the stove or grill.

No one was injured in both home fires this week.

However, both families were displaced due to fire and smoke damage.

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