NORTH DAKOTA (KXNET) — The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) announced this year’s theme for Fire Prevention Week: Cooking safety starts with YOU. Pay attention to fire prevention.

According to a news release, Fire Prevention Week is from Sunday, October 8 through Saturday, October 14.

The focus for this year is on cooking safety, which is in response to NFPA’s newest cooking fire data. According to the data, cooking is the leading cause of U.S. home fires, 49% of those fires involved some type of cooking equipment.

“These numbers tell us that more public awareness is needed around when and where cooking fires happen, along with ways to prevent them,” said Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy at NFPA, Lorraine Carli. “This year’s Fire Prevention Week theme presents a powerful opportunity to better educate the public about simple but important steps they can take to reduce their risk to home cooking fires, keeping themselves and those around them safe.”

These are some safety messages that support the theme:

  • Always keep a close eye on what you’re cooking. Set a timer for foods with longer cooking time, things that are simmering, or baking.
  • Clear the cooking area three feet of combustible things or things that can burn. This includes dish towels, oven mitts, food packaging, and paper towels.
  • Turn pot handles toward the back of the stove and keep the lid nearby. If a small grease fire happens, you can slide the lid over the pan and turn the burner off.
  • Create a “kid and pet-free zone” three feet around your cooking areas.

“Staying in the kitchen, using a timer, and avoiding distractions that take your focus away from what’s on the stove are among the key messages for this year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign,” Carli said.

If you would like to learn more, you can visit this website.