Last orders should be a first reminder to serve up a safety cooking routine in your kitchen, warn Cleveland Fire Brigade. The timely reminder comes with pubs set to re-open this weekend (4 July) and sparking potential fire hazards at home.

Unattended cooking, alcohol and distractions are the key ingredients in a recipe for disaster and the main causes of home fires.

Records show there have been 36 accidental fires in the home in the last three months. More than a third involved cooking, alcohol or a combination of both.

Steve Johnson, Senior Head, Prevention and Engagement, said: “No doubt many people will be going out for a drink for the first time in many weeks. All we are saying is enjoy yourselves but remember to take extra care in the kitchen when you get back.

“Preparing a snack ready for your return is an easy way of avoiding disaster. No need to rustle something up later when you may be easily distracted, over tired or not concentrating. Drinking and cooking do not mix. And never use a chip pan. They are highly dangerous. If you have one just get rid of it as a top priority.

“There is also the option to pre-order a takeaway. The last thing we want is careless cooking to put lives or property at risk. Being sensible is the best way to stay safe.”

The simple safety rules in the kitchen include:

  • Prepare a meal or snack before you go out or order a takeaway in advance
  • Don’t drink and cook – alcohol and cooking do not mix
  • Stand by your pan – don’t get distracted while cooking
  • Keep it clean – keep oven and grill clean, it’s a build up of food deposit and fats that sets alight

People are also urged to test smoke alarms. Figures show you are four times more likely to die in a fire where there is no working smoke alarm. You should also have an escape plan for the household in the event of a fire. This should include making sure exits are clear and easy access to keys and a mobile phone.

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