LIHU‘E — This week is Fire Prevention Week on Kaua‘i, states a proclamation presented to the Kaua‘i Fire Department on Monday morning.
“The County of Kaua‘i is committed to ensuring the safety and security of all those living in, and visiting our Garden Island,” states the proclamation delivered by Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami. “Fire is a serious public safety concern, both locally and nationally, and homes are the locations where people are at the greatest risk from fire.”
As a prelude to the week’s observance, Kaua‘i Fire Department (KFD) Prevention Bureau Capt. Justin Kaeo Kinoshita spearheaded a community-wide Fire Prevention Week kickoff on Saturday. Hundreds of people took advantage of the event getting hands-on with KFD and other agencies and organizations that have information and tips on staying safe, not only in fires.
The theme of this year’s Fire Prevention Week is — “Cooking safety starts with you. Pay attention to fire prevention.”
Cooking is the leading cause of home fires in the United States, and fire departments responded to more than 166,400 incidents annually between 2016 and 2020. Two of every five home fires start in the kitchen, with 31 percent of these fires resulting from unattended cooking.
Additionally, more than half of reported nonfatal home cooking fire injuries occurred when the victims tried to fight the fire themselves. Children under 5 years old face a higher risk of non-fire burns associated with cooking than being burned in a cooking fire.
The kickoff event, which had heavy attendance from its opening, also drew interest in first aid, especially from young parents watching the choking infant and what is the response to save a life when time saving is critical.
This was a demonstration of the proclamation’s clause that Kaua‘i first responders are dedicated to reducing the occurrence of home fires and injuries through prevention and protection education, and Kaua‘i residents are responsive to public education measures and are capable of taking personal steps to increase their safety from fire, especially in their homes.
One of the tips being offered by KFD during Fire Prevention Week is residents should turn pot handles toward the back of the stove, always keep a lid nearby when cooking, and keep a 3-foot kid-free zone around the stove, oven and other items that could get hot while cooking.
Residents should also watch what they heat and set a timer to remind them that they are cooking.
Additionally, all the people of Kaua‘i should check their kitchens for fire hazards and use safe cooking practices every day.
Source: The Garden Island