Firefighters warn residents about the dangers of kitchen fires

by: Tenikka Smith Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Firefighters went door to door in the Rockwell Park neighborhood to talk to people about fire safety.

Crews went door to door checking smoke detectors, replacing batteries and faulty detectors.  They also educated neighbors about having an escape plan.

Before they hit the streets, Charlotte Fire Capt. Rob Brisley talked about the number one reason fire crews are called to homes in Charlotte.

"Kitchen fires continue to be the number one cause of fires here in Charlotte,” he said.  

New statistics show kitchen fires are also the leading cause of fires across the country.  The U.S. Fire Administration reports on average between 2008 and 2010, 140 people were killed and 3,450 were injured in cooking fires.

"People need to understand that in a matter of seconds, if you have a pot of grease or a fire in your kitchen, it's going to double in size every 20 to 30 seconds, and that can be dangerous,” Capt. Brisley said.

It's a dangerous situation firefighters said is usually started by people cooking while distracted.

Resident Thereasea Elder spearheading bringing the firefighters to the Rockwell Park community. 

"A lot of people have to be reminded when you're cooking and there's grease on the stove, you don’t leave the kitchen.  You don't even talk on the phone because people talk on the phone, turn their back and next thing you know, it's a fire,” she said.

Elder said it's a dangerous problem that can be prevented.  

"You can't cook in another room. You only cook in the kitchen, so you stay in there when that stove is on," she said. "The distractions that you may have -- it destroys homes, it destroys lives."

Energizer teamed up with the Charlotte Fire Department to provide home safety kits to residents Thursday.  The kits included a smoke detector, batteries and a flashlight.