Recently KDHL visited with Faribault and Northfield Fire Department leaders about the impact COVID-19 is having on this year's fire safety campaign.

This is National Fire Prevention Week thanks to official sponsor, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).  NFPA has been the sponsor for more than 95 years.

This year's theme is, "Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen."  October 4-10, 2020 has been proclaimed Fire Prevention Week by the President.  The focus on cooking fire safety is in response to home cooking fires representing the leading cause of U.S. home fires, with nearly half (49 percent) of all home fires involving cooking equipment.

Unattended cooking as we've heard Faribault Fire Chief Dustin Dienst say many times on KDHL is the leading cause of these fires.

Lorraine Carli, NFPA vice president of Outreach and Advocacy says, "Cooking continues to be a major contributor to the home fire problem.  The good news is the vast majority of these fires are highly preventable." Where have we heard this before?

"This year's Fire Prevention Week campaign works to better educate the public about where potential cooking hazards exit and basic but critical ways to prevent them," Carli adds.

She says this year's focus on cooking safety is particularly timely because more people are staying home and cooking meals, "the potential for home cooking fires will likely increase as well."

Key messages surrounding the "Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen" include:

  • Keep a close eye on what you're cooking, never leave cooking unattended.
  • Keep anything that can catch fire, oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains at least 3 feet away from your stovetop.
  • Be on alert, if you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don't use the stove or stovetop.

For more information visit Fire Prevention Week .  The President of the United States has signed a proclamation declaring a national observance during the week each year since 1925.

Much of the information has been shared by Dienst but it never hurts to go over it again and again.

The Faribault Fire Chief has stated due to COVID-19 there will not be the traditional open house held at the fire station.  Firefighters also recorded videos to share with the local schools outlining "Stop, Drop and Roll" and other safety tips.

Fire Prevention Week 2020 Theme Deals with Safety in the Kitchen. Photo from NFPA