Kitchens are built around using fire and heat safely and efficiently. This means that in all kitchens, and specially in commercial kitchens, fire protection is an essential consideration in design and maintenance. Kitchen fires are unfortunately all too common and lead to injuries and property damage worth billions of dollars each year. These fires could be prevented by installing and properly maintaining a quality kitchen fire suppression system.
Kitchen fires are all too common
With open flames, high temperatures, flammable oil and intense activity, commercial kitchens are a high risk area for fires. Each year, 8,000 fires occur in commercial kitchens. And these are destructive – fires in restaurants and dining facilities cause $246 million in direct property damage every year. More than half – 57% – of all restaurant fires are caused by cooking equipment. Of these, 9% of the fires are attributed to deep fryers, 7% to ranges, and 5% to other kitchen and cooking equipment.
However, with the right equipment, kitchen fire suppression is not difficult. A kitchen fire suppression system can prevent most minor mishaps from turning into major disasters. A study that looked at more than 2,000 fire incidents found that more than 80% of these fires were put out by portable fire extinguishers. Installing a quality fire suppression system in a commercial kitchen not only protects lives and property, it is also necessary to keep the business in compliance with fire safety regulations.
A kitchen fire suppression system is essential for safety
When installing restaurant fire equipment, a few things must be kept in mind. The location of fire extinguishers should not be more than 30 feet from the cooking areas. A commercial kitchen fire suppression system should be inspected, serviced and certified by a qualified contractor every six months.
Another essential precaution applies to kitchens that use wood- and charcoal-burning ovens, like pizza places. These ovens should be cleaned out every day and the ashes should be stored outdoors in metal containers which are located 10 feet or further from buildings or combustible materials.
While kitchen fires are very common and highly destructive, they can be prevented with some basic preventive measures. The most important of these is a kitchen fire suppression system installed and maintained by a qualified contractor.