When you’re planning a new kitchen it can be easy to get lost in all the stylish characteristics of designer kitchens. Something which should take up equal amounts of consideration however is the fire safety in your kitchen.
Child Fire Safety
This is equally important if you have small children in your home, as scalds and burns can be more serious for children than adults due to their sensitive skin. When considering making your kitchen fire safe for children you need to make sure that the hob is out of reach for little hands. You should also consider making your oven fire safe as these can sometimes be tempting for children to play with. Additionally, if you design your countertops to be high enough this will prevent children from reaching dangerous appliances and utensils.
Although fire doors are not standard for building regulations it is advised that you have doors in place which are resistant for up to 30 minutes in order to aid escape when a fire threatens to roam. Self-closing doors were once the ideal way to counter a fire but are not favourable as a design feature in homes.
Timber and stonework masonry are both thought to be resistant to fires for longer periods of time, with blockwork being the best material to help keep the structure of a home in tact during a fire. Steel is considered the least fire resistant material, due to the fact that it would twist and give way under extreme heat, but is often used for supports; therefore you must pay careful attention to regulations when using steel.
Escape from a fire is something which building regulations give utmost importance to, with this in mind you might wish to keep any side or back door exits linked to your kitchen. This way, in the event of a fire which blocks exit through the main body of your house you can still exit safely out the back or side entrance into your garden or street.
Kitchen Fire Equipment
Finally, smoke detectors have been mandatory for homes since 1992, with at least one required on each floor of your home. It would be unwise to position a fire alarm inside your kitchen due to the constant steam and smoke which you get from cooking on a daily basis, but one positioned outside the kitchen door will alert you if a fire begins in the kitchen while you are elsewhere in the house.
In addition, fire extinguishers, although not required by law in homes, offer high levels of protection and certain extinguishers are specially developed to tackle kitchen-related fires involving fats or oils, such as foam fire extinguishers and powder fire extinguishers.
Written by City Fire.