Fires often start in kitchen

Over the past five years there have been 65 fires reported in Franklin that originated in the kitchen.
These fires have caused over $250,000 in direct damage and resulted in serious injuries. Nearly all of them were preventable.
Nationally, cooking was involved in an estimated 156,400 home structure fires in 2012. These fires caused 420 deaths, 5,310 injuries and $993 million in direct property damage. Cooking caused 44 percent of reported home fires, 16 percent of home fire deaths, 40 percent of home fire injuries and 15 percent of the direct property damage.
Here are some basic facts about cooking fires:
—Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in these fires.
—Two-thirds (67 percent) of home cooking fires started with the ignition of food or other cooking materials.
—Clothing was the item first ignited in less than 1 percent of these fires, but these incidents accounted for 16 percent of the cooking fire deaths.
—Ranges accounted for the largest share (58 percent) of home cooking fire incidents. Ovens accounted for 16 percent.
—Three of every five (57 percent) reported non-fatal home cooking fire injuries occurred when the victims tried to fight the fire themselves.
—Frying poses the greatest risk of fire.
—Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires.
Franklin Fire Chief Chuck Bourgeois said, “Nearly every kitchen fire we respond to is preventable. Residents are urged to pay attention when they are cooking, especially when frying foods.
“Now is the time to check your smoke detector. Make sure there is at least one operational smoke detector in your home and the batteries have been changed,” the chief concluded.

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