A grease fire can occur if oil or grease of a stove, fryer or oven turns hot enough to ignite. Remember that different types of oil burn at distinct temperatures but any type can catch fire.
It is important to note that a grease fire is considered dangerous since the fuel source is in liquid form, thus it can easily spread if water is sprayed on it. Understandably, the fire can rapidly spread and engulf other flammable objects or areas in the kitchen.
What should I do?
A vital step to prevent a fire in a kitchen is to stay put. Cooking that is unattended is the main cause of cooking-related fires. Always remain by the stove while cooking and be ready for flames in case they occur.
On the other hand, when a fire starts, and you could not put it out right away, leave the site. Attempting to extinguish the fire might not be a good idea especially if alone.
Dealing with grease fire
- Do not spray water on a grease fire. All occupants must be evacuated from the area. The fire can rapidly spread and can easily overwhelm the occupants. Any burns must be treated after vacating the building.
- Call for emergency assistance right away.
- You can smother a grease fire by covering it with a pan lid. Take care when using glass lids since they might break from extreme heat produced by an open flame.
- Another approach is to douse a grease fire with baking soda, but it requires a large amount. Unless baking soda is on hand and in large amounts, using a lid to cover the fire is a better approach.
- A dry chemical fire extinguisher can also be used, but it might contaminate the kitchen.
Quick Note / Disclaimer
The material posted on this page on a grease fire is for learning and educational purposes only. To be prepared on what to do and how to manage burn injuries from a grease fire, register for a first aid and CPR course with Winnipeg First Aid.