News release text
Thames-side firefighters have commended three women after their quick thinking actions averted a serious fire in their Pier Road home last night.
Two fire engines were called to the two storey building at 10.42pm yesterday (17 April) after the smoke alarms sounded and the homeowners called Kent Fire and Rescue Service to report a fire in their kitchen.
Crew Manager, John Allwright, said: “The residents had been heating oil in a pan on an electric hob which had got too hot. Because of the high temperature, when they added the food it flashed over but luckily the women didn’t attempt to move the pan, which could have resulted in serious injuries. They switched the electricity off at the wall, put damp towels and a lid over the pan, starving the fire of oxygen and preventing it spreading.”
When crews arrived at the flat just four minutes after receiving the call, the fire was out and they treated the occupants for smoke inhalation. One woman was taken to hospital for precautionary checks.
John added: “If you’re cooking with oil and fat you need to be aware, it reaches extremely high temperatures and is an ideal fuel for fire. Always have working smoke alarms fitted in your home and never leave cooking unattended.
“Luckily the women were in the room at the time, did exactly the right thing and also had the benefit of working smoke alarms. Their quick thinking actions certainly avoided a more serious incident.”
Follow these simple guidelines and you’ll help keep your kitchen safe:
never fill a chip pan more than a third full of oil
pat food dry first as water makes oil sizzle up, which can be dangerous
if the oil starts to smoke don't put the food in - turn off the heat and leave it to cool
avoid cooking with a chip pan after drinking alcohol
don't leave the pan unattended
If you have a chip pan fire:
call the fire and rescue service on 999 immediately
never move the pan and never throw water over it
turn off the heat (if you can do so safely) and allow it to cool completely
fit smoke alarms on every floor of your home and test the batteries regularly