Essex Fire and Rescue Service is urging parents to take extra care during the summer holidays.
It admits it’s easy to take your eyes off of cooking with children demanding attention.
There’s also a warning of digital distractions like smartphones and tablets.
- Avoid leaving children in the kitchen alone when cooking on the hob. Keep matches and saucepan handles out of their reach to keep them safe.
- Make sure saucepan handles don t stick out so they don t get knocked off the stove.
- Take care if you re wearing loose clothing this can easily catch fire.
- Keep tea towels and cloths away from the cooker and hob.
- Double check the cooker is off when you ve finished cooking.
- Take care if you need to leave the kitchen whilst cooking, take pans off the heat or turn them down to avoid risk.
Take care with electrics
- Keep electrics (leads and appliances) away from water.
- Check toasters are clean and placed away from curtains and kitchen rolls.
- Keep the oven, hob and grill clean and in good working order. A build-up of fat and grease can ignite a fire.
Deep fat frying
- Take care when cooking with hot oil it sets alight easily.
- Make sure food is dry before putting it in hot oil so it doesn t splash.
- If the oil starts to smoke it s too hot. Turn off the heat and leave it to cool.
- Use a thermostat controlled electric deep fat fryer. They can t overheat.
- If your pan catches fire, turn off the heat if it is safe to do so. Never throw water over it.
- Enjoy yourself, but don t drink too much alcohol if you are in charge of the barbecue or any cooking!
- Keep a bucket of water, sand or a garden hose nearby for emergencies.
- Follow the safety instructions provided with disposable barbecues.
- Never use a barbecue indoors.
- Never use petrol or paraffin to start or revive your barbecue; use only recognised lighters or starter fuels on coal.
- Never leave a barbecue or any cooking unattended.
- Make sure your barbecue is well away from sheds, fences, trees, shrubs or garden waste.
- Empty ashes onto bare garden soil, not into dustbins or wheelie bins. If they re hot, they can melt the plastic and start a fire.