Every October, Allegiant Fire Protection and the National Fire Protection Agency come together to celebrate National Fire Prevention Month.
Our goal every year is to educate people on the importance of maintaining fire safety throughout the year, as in 2020, there were 3,500 civilian deaths and 15,200 injuries due to fires.
This year’s theme is “Cooking Safety Starts with You,” which means Allegiant Fire Protection wants to provide you with the knowledge and know-how to protect yourself and your family from severe injuries while in the kitchen.
When is National Fire Prevention Month and Week?
National Fire Prevention Month is celebrated every October to raise awareness about the importance of fire safety. The month-long event promotes life-saving practices and home fire safety education.
In addition to the month-long event is National Fire Prevention Week, from October 8th until the 14th, 2023. This week, the NFPA presents various fire-safety-related activities: firefighters deliver educational training and numerous resources for your home and business.
National Fire Prevention Month History
National Fire Prevention Month dates back to 1925 when President Calvin Coolidge proclaimed October as Fire Prevention Week. The weeklong event was created in response to the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, which killed more than 250 people and destroyed more than 17,000 buildings.
President Coolidge said, “This waste results from the conditions which justify a sense of shame and horror; for the greater part of it could and ought to be prevented… It is highly desirable that every effort be made to reform the conditions which have made possible so vast a destruction of the national wealth.”
Since its inception, Fire Prevention Week has grown into a national campaign that includes educational programs, events, and activities for all ages. At 100 years old, “Fire Prevention Week is the longest running public health and safety observance on record.”
What is the 2023 National Fire Prevention Month Theme?
The theme for National Fire Prevention Month 2023 is “Cooking Safety Starts with You.” The theme highlights the importance of practicing safe cooking skills at home.
Previous themes include “Fire Won’t Wait. Plan Your Escape” and “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety.”
Along with the theme, the NFPA provides a variety of National Fire Prevention Month materials, including activity worksheets, learning materials, and valuable safety materials.
Cooking Safety Starts with You
Cooking is the leading cause of all home fires in 2023 (49%) and continues to climb due to inattentive cooking practices, faulty appliances, and general negligence. Here are the five key steps to look out for to protect yourself and your family from a cooking fire.
1. Pay Attention to What You’re Cooking
It might sound obvious to some, but not paying attention while you’re cooking leads to hundreds of cooking-related house fires every year. People sometimes leave a bot on the stove or something in the oven, forget about it (or take a nap), and next thing you know, a fire has broken loose.
Pay attention when using the stove, microwave, or other cooking appliance. Something as simple as burnt food leads to costly and dangerous fires.
2. Watch Your Surroundings
While paying attention to your food, don’t forget to look at your surroundings. If you’re not careful, there’s a large amount of potentially explosive items in your kitchen.
Clothes, towels, and household cleaning products are all risky if near an open flame. To avoid accidental fires, keep objects away from your stove, microwave, and other open flames.
3. Pot Handles
It’s not always a fire starter. Whatever food you have heating up in your pans is scalding hot, and if someone accidentally knocks it over or onto someone, they’ll experience severe burns.
To avoid such accidents, ensure the pan handles are always pointed to the side or towards the back of the stove. Anything left hanging over on the edge in someone’s walking path is dangerous.
4. Keep Your Kitchen Clean
A clean kitchen is a safe kitchen.
Clutter can turn into kindling for a fire in the kitchen, and a greasy stove top can make putting out fires more difficult. By keeping your kitchen clean, you are reducing the possibility of a fire from starting but also increasing your ability to put out a fire quickly.
5. Kid and Pet-Free Zones
If you have children or pets, you know they sometimes have a mind of their own. In the case of the kitchen, keeping them out protects everyone. All you need is one pan knocked over one switch turned on, and there can be a fire.
Instead, put up baby gates around the kitchen and train your pets that the kitchen is not an area for them. Trust us; it will save you a lot of trouble and stress.
6. Buy a Fire Extinguisher
If you haven’t already, now is the time to invest in a small kitchen fire extinguisher. You never know when an accident will occur, so it’s best to have the tools necessary to prevent something even worse from happening.
You don’t need to buy an industrial fire extinguisher, just something small that will be effective for kitchen fires.
National Fire Prevention Month Activities
There are many ways to get involved in National Fire Prevention Month. Some popular activities include:
- Attending a local Fire Prevention Week event
- Planning or participating in a home fire drill
- Checking smoke alarms and make sure they work
- Learn about fire safety online or through educational materials
- Volunteer with a local fire department or community group
Whatever you do to celebrate, the most important thing is to focus on fire safety and learn how to prevent fires in your home and community.
There Is No Middle Ground In Fire Protection Services
This National Fire Prevention Month, prepare your business for anything with Allegiant Fire Protection services. If you need assistance, we recommend you speak to one of the fire sprinkler professionals at Allegiant Fire Protection at 630-506-5535.