Spate of cooking fires sparks concern

A spate of recent cooking fires across Teesside is causing serious concern at Cleveland Fire Brigade which is urging householders to take extra care in the kitchen.

Firefighters have been called to five house fires in the last month – all of which involved a chip pan that had been left unattended on the cooker. A sixth fire involved clothing which had been placed on top of a hob that was left on.

Phil Lancaster, Director of Community Protection for Cleveland Fire Brigade, said: “We are appealing to all residents as a matter of urgency to take extra care in their kitchens.

“We have been pleading with people for years to chuck out their chip pans so it is worrying that we are still called out to this kind of fire in the home.

“We are urging people to keep an eye on their cooking especially at this time of year when people are traditionally spending more time in the kitchen and can be easily distracted by the festivities going on around them.

“And for those people who are planning nights out – our advice is to prepare a sandwich for when they come home or grab a takeaway to avoid the need to cook under the influence of alcohol. 

“Cleveland Fire Brigade is committed to doing all it can to prevent fires in the home and we urgently need people to follow our advice to help keep them and their loved ones safe from fire.”