Calgary officials provide safety tips as fire prevention week kicks off

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WATCH: Fire prevention week got underway in Calgary on Sunday with open houses being hosted across the city. As Josh Ritchie reports, there are many ways for people to exercise caution when it comes to preventing fires in their homes.

Fire prevention week kicked off in Calgary on Sunday, with officials hosting open houses across the city.

From January to August this year, there have been 434 structure fires with fire officials expecting around 600 by the end of the year.

The open houses looked to open the doors to the community to allow people to learn more about what they can do to prevent fires.

READ MORE: Calgary firefighters extinguish New Brighton house fire

One of the main focuses of fire prevention week is making sure people understand the dangers of cooking and what can happen should they not follow the right precautions.

“We attend one to two kitchen fires every day in the city of Calgary and half of those deal with cooking with oil — very, very dangerous,” said Carol Henke, public information officer for the Calgary Fire Department.

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“A lot of people don’t know what to do when they walk back into the kitchen and there [are] flames in their pot.”

If you happen to start a grease fire in the kitchen, officials say to not use water to put out the fire. Instead, slide a lid on the pot to cover the flames and if safe to do so, turn off the heat.

READ MORE: Garage and cars destroyed after fire in southwest Calgary

For oven fires, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent any flames from escaping.

Officials also advise against cooking if you’re feeling tired or drowsy from medication, alcohol or cannabis.

If any of these options aren’t feasible or make you feel uncomfortable, officials add that dialling 911 is always an option.

READ MORE: Residents escape injury in early morning house fire in northwest Calgary

When it comes to outside the kitchen, there are many other places throughout the house where you can exercise caution.

The most common causes of fire in the bedroom stem from people smoking in bed and leaving candles unattended.

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As for the bathroom, unplug appliances that aren’t in use such as curling irons and hair dryers.

READ MORE: Deck fire at northeast Calgary home extinguished by firefighters

Smoke alarms save lives, and it’s important to make sure it is always kept up to date.

How to tell if your smoke alarm is expired:

  • Remove the smoke alarm from the wall or ceiling.
  • Look at the back of the alarm for the date of manufacture.
  • If it was made less than 10 years ago, put the alarm back on the ceiling or wall.
  • If it was made 10 or more years ago or you cannot find the manufacture date, replace the alarm with a new one.

For more tips on how to prevent fires, visit the City of Calgary website.