With the coronavirus crisis forcing more people to make meals at home, Cheyenne Fire Rescue says it's critical those channeling their inner chef keep a close eye on what's cooking.

Prevention Chief Byron Mathews says cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires, and nearly 49 percent of all reported home fires involve cooking equipment.

"Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires," said Mathews.

"While we are home during this time, we can easily become distracted by family or work," he added. "Keeping a close eye on what is cooking and what is going on in the kitchen is very important."

Cheyenne Fire Rescue offers these tips:

  • Stay in the kitchen while cooking
  • Keep anything that can catch fire - oven mitts, wooden utensils – away from the stove top
  • Make sure all handles are turned inward, away from someone who can grab a hot handle
  • If you have young children in the home, create a “kid-free zone” of at least three feet from the stove
  • Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from cooking equipment
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