SFRS Supports National Fish & Chip day 2016

Cooking under the influence of alcohol is dangerous – so why not pick up a chippy on your way home this weekend?

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is marking National Fish & Chip day by asking people to avoid cooking under the influence of alcohol.

During 2014-15 there were 4,961 accidental house fires in Scotland and 2,329 – or 47% of them – were cooking related. This resulted in 383 people being injured.

You can reduce your chances of being hurt in a fire by buying something to eat on the way home from a night out. Whether it be your local chip shop or takeaway– you are avoiding placing yourself in danger by cooking whilst under the influence of alcohol.
Assistant Chief Officer Robert Scott, Director of Prevention and Protection, SFRS said:

“Across Scotland fish and chips has long been a national favourite – the only debate is whether you top it with salt, vinegar, sauce, mushy peas or a pickled egg!

“As well as celebrating a traditional culinary delight, SFRS would also like to thank Scotland’s chip shops for providing another great service. The fact is that for many years cooking has been the number one cause of house fires in Scotland.

“Weekends are often a peak time for cooking fires, especially where someone is cooking under the influence of alcohol.  So this National Fish & Chip Day our message is, ‘If you’re feeling hungry after a night out DON’T COOK!  Why not visit your local chip shop instead? Or prepare a cold snack.”

There’s yet another way to stay even safer – fit a heat alarm in your kitchen. These are specially designed for the kitchen and are not activated by smoke, preventing false alarms.  A heat alarm will alert you to a cooking fire more quickly than a smoke alarm and give you the best chance to get out fast.  Heat alarms are available from DIY stores or online from around £20

ACO Scott added: “Deep frying with chip pans poses an ongoing safety risk so we want to make sure everyone cooks safely and knows the associated dangers. It only takes a moment of distraction, or falling asleep, for a fire in the home to start.

“If you are cooking chips the best way to avoid having a chip pan fire is to use a thermostat controlled, electric deep fat fryer instead. The safety cut out (thermostat) controls the temperature of the fat or oil.  Oven or microwave chips are also safer alternatives to chip pans.

“If you do use a chip pan and it catches fire, never try to move the pan and never throw water over the pan as it will react violently with the hot oil.  If the fire is well developed get out, stay out, dial 999!  If the fire is in its early stages, and if it is safe to do so, turn off the heat. Then get out of the kitchen, close the door and call the SFRS.”

During National Fish & Chip Day, just like every other day of the year, SFRS offers the public a FREE Home Fire Safety Visit. Call to book one for you, or someone you know who is at risk from fire, on 0800 0731 999, text ‘fire’ to 80800 or visit us online at www.firescotland.gov.uk

To find out more about National Fish & Chip Day visit www.nationalfishandchipday.org.uk.

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