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The kitchen is the site of so much activity and collaboration in the average household. It’s where families meet to cook, converse, and eat together. However, the kitchen is also one of the most common sites of injuries in the home, which arise from the unique combination of water, electricity, fire, and oils. Frequent injuries that occur in the kitchen include burns, slips and falls, and cuts.
In order to prevent injuries in the kitchen, make sure to follow our tips on how to safe in a kitchen.
When you are working in the kitchen or kitchen appliances are in use, it is important to keep both pets and children out of the kitchen. Both children and pets alike are frequently uncoordinated and are liable to slip on water or spilt oil, to trip over cords, or to touch hot surfaces that will cause burns. In order to ensure safety in the kitchen for your kids and pets, make sure to install child-proof doors on any entrances to the kitchen, including doors that lead to the outside or the garage.
Another important safety tip is to keep electronic devices away from sources of water. This is especially important when you are working near the sink, as it is quite easy for a device to fall into a full sink of water and dishes and to cause electrical injuries and shock. In order to prevent your electrical devices from falling in the water, make sure to keep your water and electronics at least two full feet away from each other.
Another key safety tip in the kitchen is to always wear closed toed shoes when cooking or preparing foods. It is surprising how easy it is to lose your grip on a knife while cutting vegetables and to have the knife fall directly onto your foot. Make sure to wear closed toed and slip resistant shoes when working in the kitchen.
Whenever you are working with hot pots and pans, it is important that you always wear oven mitts. Those pans are usually very hot and can cause very painful burns in just a few short seconds of contact with human skin.
One of the most important steps that an amateur chef can take to protect themselves in the kitchen is to take a basic knife skills class at their local community college or cooking skills. Such a class will teach you basic knife safety, skills, and maintenance, helping to ensure that your cooking experiments do not result in a trip to the local emergency room.
Another great step that you can take to protect yourself in the kitchen is to check all electrical cords on a monthly basis. These cords can become frayed, torn, or even severely bent with frequent use, and can present a fire and water hazard.
One of the most common injuries that occur in kitchens around the world is the slip and fall, and this is often because someone caused a spill and neglected to clean it up immediately. The best way to prevent a slip and fall, in addition to wearing slip-resistant shoes, is to clean all spills with both soap and water immediately after they occur.
A fire extinguisher is an essential piece of equipment in all homes, but is especially important in homes where people frequently cook. It is incredibly easy for oil to catch on fire on top of the stove, or for a dish left in the oven for too long to also catch on fire. If this occurs, you want to be able to safely and quickly put out the fire with a nearby fire extinguisher.
It is key that you are always aware of the burners on your stovetop and that you make sure to turn them off every time that you remove food from the burner. This is especially important with electric and glass stoves, as you may not be able to visually tell that the stove is on. Forgotten active stove burners can lead to severe burns and can cause fires if towels or oven mitts are placed on top.
The last, and perhaps most important, tip is to never leave food unattended. An untold number of homes have been burned to the ground because a cook left the roast in the oven while they ran errands or worked in the garage. If a single piece of your kitchen equipment is on, you need to be within visual and hearing distance of your kitchen at all times.