Fire Safety and Prevention
When Hew McElroy moved here twenty years ago, he bought an old house to fix up and he's still working to make it better. So he cares a lot about keeping his house fire-free.
"I don't want my house to burn down. I've put too many man hours into it," he said.
So he takes measures like owning a fire extinguisher, and checking his smoke detectors. That's something the fire department is reminding everyone to do this week. It's focusing specifically on kitchen fires. The fire department says the most important thing is to keep a close eye on the kitchen when you're cooking. And never to leave a stove on and unattended.
"Most of the fires that are started in the kitchen are generally from unattended cooking fires," explained Darrin Arends of the Columbia Fire Department.
If a fire does start in your microwave or oven, the department says to turn the appliance off, and leave the door closed until the fire is gone. It also says to keep a lid nearby because grease fires can start in pans. Putting a lid on the pan will smother the flames. And to keep a fire extinguisher near the kitchen.
"I think we just need to stay on the ball, and think preventively," McElroy said.
And that's something the fire department hopes more people will learn to do this week.