ST. CLOUD -- Fire Prevention Week 2020 kicks off Sunday. This year’s theme is Serving up Fire Safety in the Kitchen.

Assistant Fire Marshal Phil Schaefer says kitchen fires are the number one cause of fires in St. Cloud.

When you're cooking, stay at the stove. Don't throw something on the stove top and try to do laundry or something like that or go watch tv. Most of the fires we have in the kitchens are considered unattended cooking and that's what happens. They walk away from the stove and a few minutes later the grease or whatever starts on fire and then it starts the cabinets going and then we have a kitchen fire.

Schaefer says there are a couple of things you can do if you catch a cooking fire quickly enough.

To help the situation there are a couple of things you can do if it's manageable. Remove the pan from the heat source. You can just slide it to a different burner. If it is burning just a small flame, if you're there in time you could put a lid on top of it, move it off the heat source, and a lot of times that helps.

He says it is also important to be sure the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in your house are working properly.

Typically, crews from the St. Cloud Fire Department set up fire drills and tours with local schools during the week, but Schaefer says this year will likely be different because of COVID-19.

Fire Prevention Week runs through Saturday.


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