News release text
Medway firefighters are reiterating the importance of care in the kitchen after a fire in Chatham last night which led to a cat being rescued.
Two appliances were sent to Sturla Road at 7.23pm to a house which had been converted into ground and first floor flats. They arrived to find a fire in the first floor property.
Watch Manager Simon Yaxley said: “A pan full of oil was left on the hob and somehow the heat had been knocked on. Fortunately there was a working smoke alarm and both the woman and her young daughter managed to get outside before we arrived. A team wearing breathing apparatus went in and extinguished the fire with a hose reel before using a positive pressure ventilation fan to clear the smoke. They then rescued a black cat, which was hiding in an upstairs bedroom.”
The kitchen was completely destroyed with smoke logging throughout the property. The Red Cross Vehicle was also in attendance to assist the family as the property was uninhabitable.
Simon Yaxley added: “Unattended pans and a build up of fat and food residue on cooking appliances are common causes of fires that can have serious consequences. If you leave the kitchen, turn the heat off, fire starts when your attention stops. Just three breaths of fire smoke can be fatal, so it’s vital that everyone has working smoke alarms in their homes. We offer free safety advice and services to everyone but there’s a lot you can do to keep yourself safe.”
Follow these safety tips:
Watch what you heat and don’t leave cooking unattended.
Turn saucepan handles so that they don’t stick out from the hob
Never fill a pan more than one third full of fat or oil. If the oil starts to smoke, do not begin cooking - remove from the heat and leave it to cool
Keep the oven, hob and grill clean - a build up of fat and grease can easily catch fire
Prevent children accidently turning on electric cookers by switching them off at the main after use
Fit smoke alarms on every floor of your home, and test the batteries weekly
If there is a fire, don’t take risks by tackling it yourself. Get out, stay out and call the fire and rescue service.