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Home Cooking Fires Triple Around Thanksgiving

By Jeffrey Hess | Published 23 Nov 2010 12:00pm | comments
A map marking home fire deaths hangs in Davis's Office.

The Thanksgiving week is the worst week of the year for home cooking fires. It is estimated that 13-hundred fires nationwide will start that way this week.
MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports that even a momentary distraction can lead to a blaze.

During Thanksgiving week in Mississippi last year, there were 16 home cooking fires, and 14 of those burned the house to the ground.

The State Fire Marshall wants you to “Stand By Your Pan”. That's the slogan they use to remind you to pay close attention to your cooking.

Crowded stoves, alcohol, and big family gatherings can distract cooks from their stoves, says Deputy Chief Fire Marshal Ricky Davis.

"And when you leave that unattended, things can go wrong and result in a fire. Stuff can over heat and spill out onto the stove burner," Davis said nearby drapes and towels can also catch fire.

Earlier this year, 74-year old Bobby Smith put a pan on the stove to cook some chicken at his home in Ohlo. His wife Jannie says he only left the stove for a few minutes before the stove caught fire.

"I was in the den, the living room, I seen the flames. And we was all running around trying to figure out what to do and I remembered the fire extinguisher. And I got the fire extinguisher and we got it put out," Smith said.

Smith's children had just given them a smoke alarm and the extinguisher a week before the fire, and because of those safety tools, their kitchen suffered only minor damage.

If a fire happens to you, officials advise not to touch the pan or put water on it, but to cover it with a lid or another pan to snuff it out.

If that doesn't work, call 911 because 60% of people who are injured in these fires got hurt while trying to battle the blaze.


A map marking home fire deaths hangs in Davis's Office.



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