A NEW campaign has been launched in Denbighshire, Conwy, Gwynedd and Anglesey to help curb house fires during lock down.

As part of the #Just1 campaign, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service is urging the public to take extra care whilst continuing to spend more time cooking at home as many restaurants, cafes and pubs remain closed.

Across Wales generally, more than 40 percent of all fires in the home start in the kitchen – but during lockdown, that figure has risen even higher as people have been spending more time than usual cooking in the kitchen.

Paul Scott, senior fire safety manager, said: “With everyone confined to their homes during, many of us have been getting creative with how we pass the time and that has included comforting ourselves by cooking more, sharing recipes and posting photos of creations on social media.

“This is a great way of keep in touch with family and friends – but we have noticed an increase in kitchen fires as a result.

“Unfortunately, we are all too aware that just one distraction whilst cooking really could spell disaster - it sounds obvious but getting distracted is one of the main causes of a kitchen fire, whether it’s a distraction from our children or simply using a mobile phone or tablet."

The fire and rescue services analysed cooking fires across Wales. Out of those looked at, the large majority occurred in the kitchen and being distracted was the biggest human factor responsible, with falling asleep being a close second.

Other causes involved material left on the hob or too near the cooker, dirty ovens or overheated chip pans.

Firefighters are therefore highlighting these key safety tips as part of the #Just1 campaign:

  • Never turn your back on your cooking
  • Keep your oven clean and don’t leave items nearby that could catch fire
  • Test your smoke alarms regularly
  • In the event of a fire in your kitchen, get out, stay out and call 999.

Mr Scott added: "“It’s startling that 40 percent of all the fires we attend tend to start in the kitchen - but even more startling to think that most of these could be prevented by taking some very simple precautions.

“This means reducing the chances of you or your family getting hurt, or of you having to foot the bill for a completely new kitchen.”