Cooking Safely

  • Don’t get distracted when you are cooking
  • Never leave pans and grills unattended
  • Take care if you’re wearing loose clothing. It can catch fire easily
  • Don't cook if you have been drinking alcohol - you may get drowsy or lose concentration

Cooker and toaster safety

Prevent fires when using a cooker or a toaster -

  • Turn saucepans so the handles don't stick out over the edge of the hob or over another ring
  • Double check that the cooker is off when you have finished cooking. Switch it of at the mains switch on the wall
  • Make sure tea-towels aren’t hanging over the cooker. Don't put oven gloves on top of a hot cooker
  • Keep the oven, hob and grill clean - built-up fat and bits of food can start a fire
  • Check that the toaster is clean. Empty the crumb tray regularly

Dealing with a fire in your kitchen

If a pan catches fire -

  • Don't move it. It will be very hot
  • Turn off the heat if it's safe to do so - don’t lean over the pan to reach the controls
  • Don’t use a fire extinguisher on a pan of oil. The force of the extinguisher can spread the fire
  • Never use water on chip pan fires as this will cause a fireball
  • Get out, stay out and call 999

If an electrical appliance catches fire, don’t throw water on it. If it is safe to do so, you may be able to put out the fire immediately by:

  • Pulling the appliance’s plug out
  • Switching off the power at the fuse box

If the fire doesn’t go out, get out of the house, stay out and call 999


If you have your own microwave in your flat:

  • Cook items in the microwave for the correct length of time. Make sure you set the timer correctly
  • Do not leave the microwave unattended when in use
  • Do not use metal items or foil in the microwave
  • Take care when using paper, plastic, wooden or other combustible materials in the microwave as they can catch fire
  • Oil and fat should not be heated in the microwave
  • If using cling film, take care when removing it to avoid steam burns
  • Take care when heating food with high sugar content - sugar and fat can catch fire
  • Do not use sealed containers to heat up food
  • Do not use the microwave to heat up eggs in their shells, nuts or fruit/vegetables without piercing first
  • If heating liquids, always stir before cooking
  • Allow liquids to stand after heating in the microwave then stir