FIREFIGHTERS are urging people to take extra care when cooking after attending a dozen kitchen fires over the bank holiday weekend.
Between Saturday morning and Monday night, firefighters were called to 12 separate kitchen fires across the county.
Most started as a result of cooking being left unattended.
Two of the occupiers involved had to be led to safety and another needed treatment for smoke inhalation.
One of the incidents was in Selsey, when an ambulance was called to treat an elderly woman for smoke inhalation after the fire.
The call came in at 6.20pm on Saturday (August 23), to St Peter’s Crescent.
The fire was in the kitchen of a first-floor flat, and fire crews tackled the fire while the woman was treated by paramedics.
Deputy safer communities manager for West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, Adrian Carter, said: “We work very hard as a service to promote kitchen fire safety to the local community so attending this many in such a short space of time is a real concern. Thankfully, the fires were brought under control very quickly by our crews and haven’t led to serious injury. However, the consequences could have been far more serious and many of them could easily have been avoided.
The service said careless cooking was the most common cause of accidental house fires in West Sussex, with around two-thirds of all house fires starting in the kitchen.
He urged residents to have a home fire safety check, where smoke detectors are fitted or tested. To find out more call 0800 328 6487 or visit www.westsussex.gov.uk/fire where you can also access a full range of fire safety advice.