Members of the MFD Fire Prevention Division pose together
The MFD Fire Prevention Division is here for you every day to ensure
Madison remains a safe place to live, work, and play!

Happy Fire Prevention Week! This year, we want to bring your attention to the #1 cause of home fires and home fire injuries:


The top reason these fires occur is because of unattended cooking—someone stepping away from the stove and/or becoming distracted while food is cooking.

All week long, the Madison Fire Department’s Fire Prevention Division shares tips and reminders about how to stay safe in the kitchen. Be sure to follow along on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (X).

Fire Prevention Week is an excellent time to review the following with your household:

  • Stand by your pan: Never walk away from your stove while it’s in use.
  • Keep a lid nearby: Slide a lid over your pan if a fire ignites. Never throw water on a fire that involves grease or cooking oil.
  • Put the phone down: Your phone is a convenient tool for setting timers and consulting recipes, but don’t let it distract you in the kitchen. Do not attempt to multitask while cooking.
  • Prevent burns and scalds: Children under 5 are likeliest to be injured by non-fire cooking burns. This usually happens because the child reached for a hot beverage or grabbed the handle of a pot or pan. Keep handles turned toward the rear of the cooking range. Talk to your kids about not touching hot items and staying at least three feet away from all cooking areas.
  • Roll up your sleeves: Avoid wearing loose clothing that could catch on fire. Keep utensils, oven mitts, food packaging, and towels away from the cooking range. Wipe away any splattered grease or oil to keep the stovetop clean.
  • Plan your escape: Know two ways out of every room, your home, and your workplace. Choose a meeting place where your household will convene if there is a fire. Practice your evacuation plan together.
  • Be sober and alert: Some cooking fires are the result of people cooking while tired or intoxicated. Do not attempt to cook if you are not fully alert. Keep the phone number of your favorite pizza joint or your favorite delivery app handy!
  • Get renter’s insurance: A larger share of cooking fires occur in apartment buildings. These fires often affect multiple apartments, not the unit where the fire occurred. There are many affordable renter’s insurance plans available, and they’re well worth the investment if a fire affects your living space and belongings. Renters are encouraged to research their options and enroll in a plan today.

Remember: Cooking safety starts with YOU! Pay attention to fire prevention!

Fire Prevention Week banner with slogan and image of Sparky the Fire Dog
This content is free for use with credit to the City of Madison - Fire and a link back to the original post.