Fire Prevention Week
COLUMBIA - Fire departments across the country are spending the week of October 9 to focus on fire safety.
Fire Prevention Week dates back to the Great Chicago Fire, one of the worst fires in the U.S. The fire killed more than 250 people and ruined more than 2,000 acres of land.
The Fire Marshals Association of North America decided that the best way prevent future fires like the Great Chicago Fire from happening again was to find a way to inform the public about fire safety.
Kitchen safety is this year's focus. State Fire Marshal Randy Cole wants the public to understand the fire risks that can happen. He says that families should develop an escape plan if a fire were to occur in the house. He also suggests replacing smoke alarm batteries at least a once year.
Other safety tips include:
- Stay in the kitchen when you are frying, grilling, broiling, or boiling food.
- Keep potholders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper and plastic bags, towels, and anything else that can burn, away from the stove top.
- Clean up food and grease from burners and stove tops.
- Keep a fire extinguisher near the kitchen exit. Make sure you know how to operate the extinguisher. Fire extinguishers are never a substitute for calling the fire department, even if a fire is small.