Firefighters have vowed to work with Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire residents to curb the number of potentially fatal chip pan fires in the region.
Firefighters will visit hundreds of homes across the north-east to focus attention on how to avoid hazards while cooking.
Chip pan fires – or deep fat fryer fires – are estimated to cause around a fifth of call-outs in Scotland.
And this week, Freedom of Information statistics revealed that the number of chip pan fires – referred to as “an accident waiting to happen ” – remain steady despite efforts to educate the nation.
In Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire there were 25 such incidents during the 2017-18 recording period, 23 in 2018-19 and already 13 in the first half of this year.
Of those incidents, 43 took place within home,s while 18 took place in other buildings, such as businesses.
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With the 61 making up a portion of the region’s accidental fires, the fire service has stated that kitchen safety will be an area they seek to focus upon in the coming weeks.
A spokeswoman for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said: “We are committed to preventing accidental fires around the home, including chip pan fires.
“We know that these kinds of accidents in the kitchen happen when people are not paying attention or they leave things unattended.
“The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service offers householders a free home fire safety visit where a member of our team will take them through a dedicated fire safety plan, which includes advice on how to stay safe when cooking.
“A working smoke detector in the home is also crucial and we can help with this too.”
In Scotland, nearly 20 people are either killed or injured every day in accidental fires that start in their kitchen, with deep fat frying the most common cause.
Today the Garioch area committee will consider the issue and the number of fires in their ward.
In a report to be discussed by councillors, Martin Tait, local senior officer for Aberdeenshire and Moray, states: “Reducing unintentional harm and improving home safety remain a priority for the SFRS.
“The number of accidental dwelling fires within the area have increased over the period and we will provide a greater focus on cooking related fires and distraction during home safety fire visits.”
Meanwhile fire station manager Willie Chisholm told last month’s Formartine area committee that while there had been a reduction in that area, firefighters would still be working to address the issue.
He added they would focus on the older generation who are classed as “high risk” for accidental fires.
To arrange a free home fire safety visit, call 0800 0731 999, text ‘FIRE’ to 80800 from your mobile phone or visit www.firescotland.gov.uk.
For more information, visit www.firescotland.gov.uk/your-safety.