London Fire Brigade

Fire chiefs slam food blogger for promoting cooking when ‘hosed’

16 October 2013

London Fire Brigade is reminding people that they should stay out of the kitchen after a few too many, following the recent publication of an article, ‘How to whisk up a mean pissed pasta,’ in the Evening Standard.

Food blogger Helen Graves, who won an award recently for a piece she wrote about drunk cooking, shares recipes and ideas for what to make while “completely ratted.”

Fire chiefs have slammed the advice as irresponsible and naïve.

Mark Hazelton, Community Safety Development Manager for London Fire Brigade, said:

“Cooking while drunk is incredibly dangerous – not only are your normal senses compromised, you’re more likely to fall asleep with something on the stove, which could cause a deadly fire.

“Three quarters of fires involving alcohol are caused by people cooking under the influence – which is why we recommend getting a takeaway instead. Helen’s advice is dangerous and could have terrible consequences. Tragically, one in four people who die in a fire have alcohol in their system.

“Apparently Helen published a recipe book about sandwiches – a cold sandwich is a much safer option for a drunken snack.”

The Brigade is offering Helen a home fire safety visit, so that firefighters can come to her home to talk to her about fire safety in the kitchen. Home fire safety visits are available to anyone who may have an increased risk of fire.

Last year, the Brigade ran a successful campaign urging people to get a takeaway instead of cooking after a night out.

Helen’s article, and advice on ‘suppers for when you’re sizzled,’ appeared just a week before a national firefighter strike. The Brigade is reminding people to take extra care to avoid a fire this Saturday evening, especially in the kitchen, as firefighters will be on strike from 1830 until 2330.

ENDS

London Fire Brigade’s top five tips for staying safe in the kitchen:

1. Never leave cooking unattended. Take pans off the heat and turn off the hob and/or grill if you have to leave the kitchen while cooking.
2. Keep anything else that may catch fire (such as tea towels) away from the hob.
3. Keep your hob, grill, and oven clean – a build-up of grease can easily catch fire.
4. Never leave children alone in the kitchen. Keep matches, lighters and pan handles where children can’t reach them.
5. Avoid cooking if you are tired, have been drinking alcohol, or are taking medication that can make you drowsy.

For more tips, check out the London Fire Brigade website. http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/safetyinthekitchen.asp