Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Don't ruin your romantic meal this Valentine Day

Essex County Fire and Rescue Service is urging people to be take extra care when rustling up a romantic candle-lit dinner at home this Valentine's Day. 

The warning comes as part of a month-long campaign advising Essex residents how they can reduce the risk of having a cooking-related house fires. 

Every year, more accidental house fires are caused by cooking than anything else. And what’s more alarming is that cooking-related fires result in the most injuries  and the second most fatalities (after smoking products). 

The causes of cooking fires are generally due to distraction and carelessness, things that are easily avoided if you know about the fire risks and what to do to reduce them. 

So rather than ruining your romantic meal please follow our safety advice: 

  • Take care if you need to leave the kitchen while cooking. Take pans off the heat or turn them down to avoid risk  
  • If a pan catches fire, don’t take any risks – Get Out, Stay Out, and Call 999  
  • Double check the hob is off when you’ve finished cooking  
  • Avoid leaving children in the kitchen alone when cooking. Keep matches and saucepan handles out of their reach to keep them safe  
  • Keep your cooking equipment clean and in good working order. A build-up of fat and grease can ignite a fire
  • Don’t cook after drinking alcohol  
  • Hot oil can catch fire easily - be careful that it doesn’t overheat. Never throw water on a chip pan fire  
  • Make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home and test them monthly 
  • Don’t use real candles. LED candles are much safer. 

For more information about keeping safe from fire in your home, visit our website: 


Page last updated 14.02.2021

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