Kitchen fires signal disturbing start to winter for North QLD
Already this winter, nine homes in Northern Queensland have been damaged or destroyed by fire and kitchen fires are the main culprit.
Minister for Community Safety Jack Dempsey said in the first month of winter, five North Queensland house fires started in the kitchen which was a serious concern.
“Statistics show winter is always the busiest time of year for house fires and with a month and a half still to come, it is very concerning to think of how many people are yet to face heartbreak this season,” Mr Dempsey said.
“It is a sobering fact that more families around North Queensland may have their homes damaged or destroyed by fire by the time spring rolls around if precautions are not taken while cooking.
“In June alone, more than half of all the region’s residential structure fires started in the kitchen and were caused by cooking equipment, stove tops and ovens.
“People need to understand kitchen fires spread rapidly and are incredibly dangerous.
“A moment’s inattention can have devastating consequences and in most cases, this heartbreak could have been easily avoided.
“Don’t tempt fate – if you don’t already take the necessary steps to ensure your kitchen is fire safe every time you prepare a meal, now is the time to do so.
“Always supervise children and clean cooking appliances after use, storing them a safe distance away from water and open flames.
“All kitchens need to have a fire extinguisher and fire blanket installed.
“Residents should also check their smoke alarms are in good working order by testing and cleaning them every month.
“If a fire does start in the kitchen and it is not safe to put it out, residents should switch off the appliance, leave the area immediately and phone Triple Zero (000).”
Mr Dempsey said other causes of house fires in June this year included clothes dryers, heaters and chimneys.