Many people consider the kitchen to be the heart of their home. However, a kitchen can also be a pretty dangerous place. After all, kitchens are equipped with sharp knives and have exposed hot surfaces, boiling water, and sizzling grease. If you aren't careful, you could get seriously injured in your kitchen. Fortunately, you can use some of these tips to make your kitchen a safer place.
Keep Your Knives Sharp
When you think about knives, you might assume that the sharper a knife is, the more likely you are to be injured using it. However, that isn't true. Yes, sharp blades are dangerous. However, a knife with a dull blade requires you to use more force, which in turn, makes it easier to lose control of the knife. Basically, you're more likely to cut yourself if the knife you're using slips, and the knife is more likely to slip if the blade is dull. To test the sharpness of your knife blades, hold a piece of paper in the air and try to slice it with a knife. A knife with a sharp blade will easily cut the paper, unlike a knife with a dull blade. If your knife is dull, use an electric knife sharpener or a water stone to sharpen the blade before using it again.
Be Prepared for Fires
Did you know that cooking is the number one cause of residential fires in the United States? Because of this, you need to make sure you're prepared for a kitchen fire at all times. You should always keep baking soda, a fire extinguisher, and lids to your pots and pans handy — all of these items can be used to extinguish kitchen fires.
Additionally, you should consider having an automatic fire suppression system, such as a sprinkler system, installed in your home. Many people avoid installing residential sprinkler systems because they believe that it's easy for the system to misfire or that a fire in one room will activate the entire system, ruining everything in the home. However, that simply isn't true. By installing an automatic fire suppression system in your home, it's easier to contain an out-of-control kitchen fire until firefighters arrive because, once the kitchen sprinkler is activated, it works to control the fire while you vacate your home.
Contact a company like Amerisafe for more information about installing a fire suppression system.
You should avoid leaving the kitchen while you have something cooking. If you leave your unattended while cooking, you might not spot a dangerous problem quickly. Also, scalding is one of the most common types of kitchen injuries. You can limit your risk by turning the handles on your pots and pans away from the front of your stove while you're cooking. This way, they aren't easily accessible by small children. Also, steam can cause scalding injuries, so be very careful when you remove a lid from a hot pot or pan, as well as when you're removing things from the microwave — especially bags of microwave popcorn.
Kitchen safety should always be a priority, especially in homes where small children and/or pets live. Being vigilant and preparing for possible kitchen fires helps ensure your family is safe while in your kitchen.