It's Fire Prevention Week and the theme for 2013 is kitchen fires.
At a recent Town Council meeting, Mayor George Apel read his annual proclamation declaring the week and Fire Marshal Ray Walker took the opportunity to remind resident to be careful - and smart - in the kitchen.
Here are some facts from both the National Fire Prevention Association and the Federal Emergency Management Agency:
Cooking Fires in Residential Buildings (2008-2010) ...
• On average, an estimated 164,500 cooking fires in residential buildings occur each year in the United States.
• Cooking was, by far, the leading cause of all residential building fires and injuries.
• Residential building cooking fires occurred mainly in the evening hours from 4 to 9 p.m., peaking from 5 to 8 p.m., accounting for 26 percent of the fires.
• Residential building cooking fires peaked in November at 10 percent and declined to the lowest point during the summer months from June to August.
Confined fires, those fires involving the contents of a cooking vessel without fire extension beyond the vessel, accounted for 94 percent of residential building cooking fires.
• Oil, fat and grease (51 percent) were the leading types of material ignited in non-confined cooking fires in residential buildings.
In General ...
• In 2011, U.S. fire departments responded to 370,000 home structure fires. • These fires caused 13,910 civilian injuries, 2,520 civilian deaths, $6.9 billion in direct damage.
• On average, seven people die in U.S. home fires per day.
• Cooking is the leading cause home fires and home fire injuries, followed heating equipment. Smoking is a leading cause of civilian home fire deaths.
• Most fatal fires kill one or two people.
• In 2011, 12 home fires killed five or more people resulting in a total of 67 deaths.