Lets be honest, we are surrounded by distractions: the phone is beeping, the program that you want to watch is starting, the dog started to chase a fly around the home, the boy needs help with his homework… when you least expected, you start smelling something burning. You run to the kitchen but it is too late, there is smoke everywhere and you dinner is slightly black and inedible.
Luckily, it will be just a scare and some cursing, but sometimes this might be a bigger issue.
AXA, an Spanish insurance company, analysed their reports from 2019 and discovered that 74% of the fires were due to a forgotten pan on the stove top.
According to the Emergency Department from Beaumont, Texas, two thirds of the home fires start in the kitchen, causing 480 death yearly just in the USA.
Moreover, we checked another report by the National Fire Protection Association that investigted kitchen fires in 2019. They notify that most of the fires happen during Thanksgiving and Christmash. Between the 2013 and 2017 there were in average 470 kitchen fires dialy, with a total of 173,200 yearly. From those, 31% was due to leaving the kitchen unatended and then somethings catching fire (foods, fats or equipment).
Foto de Tobias Rehbein en PexelsAnd even though most kitchens had fire alarms (87% of the cases reported and 70% of the deaths), they explain that sometimes it was too late.
The kitchen tops were the cause of 62% of the fires, 89% of the deaths and 79% of the injured. Another Fire Department from Massachusetts decided to modify the stoves of flats for elderly adults with low income. The people that they chose for the test had on average 12 fire repot per month in 2015. They modified 800 kitchens to avoid getting too hot. Surprisingly, this modification led to 10 months without fires.
As you can see, cooking isn’t a game. Even when we have an alarm, when it detects the fire it might be too late. Firstly, we should never stop paying attention to what we are cooking. However, we are humans… and a little help is always safer.