Fire Prevention Week Puts Safety on the Front Burner!

In Calgary, cooking is the leading cause of home fires and home fire injuries. Cooking left unattended is the leading cause of cooking fires and death.

That’s why this year, the Calgary Fire Department (CFD) is proud to observe and promote the National Fire Protection Association’s theme for Fire Prevention Week - Cooking safety starts with you. Pay attention to fire prevention.

This year’s campaign aims to educate everyone about simple but important actions they can take to keep themselves and their families safe.

“Fire Prevention Week serves as an important reminder that cooking safety starts with each one of us,” said Jeff Budai, Community Safety Coordinator with the CFD. “It only takes a minute for a fire to start. The best thing Calgarians can do is pay attention while they’re cooking and reduce distractions and risks in the kitchen. By following a few simple safety precautions, our kitchens can remain a place of safety and enjoyment for our families.”

When preparing food and using cooking appliances, following these important safety tips:

1. Watch what you heat. Always pay close attention to what you are frying, grilling, broiling, boiling or baking. Set a timer to remind you that you are cooking. If you leave the kitchen, for even a brief period of time, turn off the stove and remove any pots or pans from the burner.

2. Turn pot handles toward the back of the stove. Always keep a lid nearby when cooking. If a small grease fire starts, slide the lid over the pan if you feel safe doing so, then turn off the burner, exit your home and call 9-1-1.

3. Have a “kid- and pet-free zone” of one metre around the stove or grill and anywhere hot food or drink is prepared or carried.

Additional tips and reminders:

  • Keep flammable items such as potholders, over mitts, wooden utensils, and other items that can burn away from the stovetop.
  • Educate children about hot objects to prevent scalding injuries.
  • Grill outdoors, away from structures, with a one-metre safety zone for children and pets.

·       Use microwave ovens safely; do not use extension cords and open food cautiously.

  • Avoid cooking when tired or after consuming alcohol or medication.

Finally, ensure working smoke alarms are installed near cooking areas, in every bedroom, outside of sleeping areas and on each level of the home, including basements.

Family-friendly open houses
To help Calgarians learn more about fire prevention and how to reduce the risk of cooking fires, CFD is hosting four open houses across the city on October 8, from 1 – 4 p.m. Calgarians of all ages are invited to drop by to talk to the firefighters, tour the trucks and enter to win some great prizes.

The Open Houses will be held at the following fire stations:

·Forest Heights - 123 44 Street S.E.
·Temple – 7199 Temple Drive N.E.
·McKenzie Towne – 6 McKenzie Towne Gate S.E.
·Signal Hill – 3800 69 Street S.W.

CFD will also be at the Genesis Centre on October 14, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., to share fire prevention information. Calgarians are encouraged to drop by to talk to the firefighters about cooking safety.

Smoke alarm blitz 
Every year during Fire Prevention Week, CFD visits a community with smoke alarms in hand, offering to install new smoke alarms for free. This year, they will be in Marlborough the evening of October 12 to test, and where necessary, install or provide smoke alarms for residents of that community. CFD will be joined by ATCO, who will be offering carbon monoxide alarms to the residents.

Thanks to generous donations of smoke alarms from Kidde Canada, CFD has installed almost 500,000 alarms into Calgarian’s homes as part of their Home Safety Program.

About Fire Prevention Week

Fire Prevention Week is held annually by fire departments across North America. Fire Prevention Day was proclaimed in Canada in 1919 to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, as well as a major fire that destroyed the Centre Block of the Parliament buildings in Ottawa on February 3, 1916. In 1922, Fire Prevention Day expanded to Fire Prevention Week.

For more information about cooking safety and Fire Prevention Week activities, please visit