content derived from eHow.com
House fires are one of the constant reminders of how close you could be to losing everything that you love and cherish. However, you can avoid ever having a house fire by using some common sense, since many house fires are easily preventable. By understanding the top cause of house fires in the U.S., you can take steps to ensure that it never happens in your home.
Top Cause of House Fires
Cooking causes the most house fires throughout the United States each year, with 28 percent of all house fires attributed to this source. While 28 percent may not seem like the largest cause of house fires, there are over 14,000 people injured and 850 people killed in cooking fires each year.
With the wide variety of appliances being used, there are countless ways that a fire can start in your kitchen. One of the most common types of house fires results from leaving your stove on. Having a stove that runs on natural gas, and leaving it on with an open flame source, is one of the fastest ways to have a fire start. Deep fryers also can be a difficult problem in the kitchen. Many deep fryers use a large amount of oil; if this oil happens to catch fire, it can be next to impossible to put out.
People who cook outdoors with grills can have a grease fire go out of control. Also, keeping a grill too close to the house while using it to cook can cause a fire by igniting the exterior of the home. House fires are extremely dangerous. Not only do they go through an entire house in a matter of minutes, but they also can start when you least expect them.
Prevention of House Fires
While all of these fires point back to cooking, there are several procedures that you can follow to lower the risk of having a fire while cooking. One of the best ideas is to pay attention whenever you are cooking. Many people may try to complete another task while their stove is cooking up dinner, but you need to at least check in on your stove every 20 to 30 minutes. Another great idea to avoid having a kitchen fire is to make sure you turn off your stove, oven, microwave or other cooking device when you are done with it. By making sure you completely turned off your cooking device, you can save yourself from ever having to worry about a fire when you are not cooking.
Cooking is a task that every single household does every day. It provides people with delicious, warm food to eat. However, if you do not pay proper attention or follow fire safety rules when you are cooking, it can turn into a disaster. Always turn off the cooking appliances when you are done cooking. Also, avoid walking away from the food when you are cooking. If you have a cooking appliance in your home that uses natural gas, make especially sure that you turn that appliance off when you are done using it. A supply of natural gas with an open flame is quickly becoming one of the main contributors to the reason house fires are the number one cause of fires in the United States.