RV kitchen fires can be destructive and difficult to put out. An RV fire is especially threatening because the small space can fully go ablaze fairly quickly. There is an especially high number of RV kitchen fires during the holidays since people are cooking more than usual. Another reason is because people may be using their RV kitchen for the first time and aren’t as careful as they should be.
Below are some ways you can prevent RV kitchen fires and put them out if they do go ablaze.
How Do I Put Out an Oven Fire?
If you’re not careful, you can easily start a fire in the oven. Are you cooking a turkey in your RV oven this Thanksgiving? Then be careful with greasing drippings when you baste. When baking, the drip from batter could also start a fire. Even food particles, like bread crumbs, can go up in flames.
If a fire does occur, make sure to turn off both the oven and the stove without touching anything that may burn you. Keep the oven door closed. If you don’t, flames may shoot out and catch fire elsewhere. You may even burn your face and hair. In most cases, shutting off the oven and keeping the door closed will starve the fire. However, if it doesn’t seem to be slowing down and is growing quickly, leave and call 911 immediately.
If the fire seems to be dying out on its own, open your windows and try to air out the RV. However, do not open the oven until you’re sure the fire is completely out. Oxygen only feeds flames. After the oven has cooled down, carefully remove the pan from the oven as it may still be very hot. Wait to clean up after you’ve ventilated the RV and everything is cool to the touch. Figure out the cause of the fire before using your RV kitchen again.
Sometimes, the biggest fault of an RV kitchen fire is a dirty oven. That’s why you should always make sure that the oven is thoroughly clean before you start cooking. We all know cooking in an oven that is caked with food particles from months of cooking is pretty gross. Dried-on bits of food and grease from your last cooking session can catch on fire if you use the oven again without cleaning it first. Not only are the smell and fumes from the residual grime unpleasant, but they are actually a warning that the oven is not safe to use. The smoke from recooking the mess can cause damage even if you’re lucky enough to avoid a fire.
Also, don’t leave your oven unattended with the self-cleaning feature on either. People have reported oven fires with that function turned on, too.
How Do I Put Out a Stovetop Fire?
A kitchen fire that starts on the stovetop is potentially more dangerous and hazardous than an oven fire. When you turn off and close the oven, the fire usually dies out on its own due to lack of oxygen. However, a stovetop fire is out in the open, so it will continue to thrive unless you do something to put it out.
Covering the flames with a pan or pot cover to cut off the oxygen is the wisest thing to do. If that doesn’t work, throw lots of baking soda on the fire. If the fire is still not going out and you’re not in immediate danger, use your fire extinguisher. However, never stick around if the fire is growing quickly. You’re most likely better off exiting your RV and calling 911 from a safe distance.
Water Over Fire = Fireball
The biggest mistake people make when a small kitchen fire erupts is to throw water on the flames. This is actually the worst thing you can do because you’re essentially making the situation more combustible. Chances are that your RV kitchen fire is caused by oil. Adding water to fiery oil is just plain dangerous. Water will cause an eruption after it hits the pan and quickly heats up. These shooting flames are often what leads fire to catch onto other parts of the kitchen and eventually the entire RV.
Broilers and Toaster Ovens
According to Bon Appetit, 33% of fires occur because food is left unattended while cooking. With that in mind, never leave appliances unattended while they’re on. Not even for a minute. This includes microwaves, broilers, toasters and toaster ovens.
Broilers are common fire starters. They’re frequently used to cook steaks, bacon and all sorts of greasy foods. It’s important to be careful whenever you use a broiler, and make sure to clean it after every use. Also, if you have a toaster oven in your RV, remember that bread is one of the most commonly burned foods when left unsupervised. Always stick around in the kitchen until your food is done.
RV Kitchen Fire Prevention Tips
There are a few additional precautions you can take before using your RV kitchen that can help prevent any fires from occurring.
- Never wear loose sleeves or hanging accessories like scarves when cooking on the stovetop or placing/removing food from the oven.
- Clean your oven regularly, not just when it begins to smell or smoke.
- Never leave anything unattended on the stovetop, in the oven or in other appliances that cook food.
- Place a large tray beneath anything you’re cooking so the grease and juices do not drip over and become a fire hazard.
- Cover any food that may splatter. If you want crispy skin on your Thanksgiving turkey, first make sure the juices at the bottom will not bubble over or splatter before leaving the dish uncovered. Empty some of the liquid if you must to avoid this from happening and place a collecting tray underneath.
- Stock up on baking soda, which quickly extinguishes flames effectively.
- Always keep a fire extinguisher in your RV kitchen and make sure it has not expired.
Does RV Insurance Cover Fire Damage?
To put it simply, the type of RV Insurance coverage you have and the cause of the fire determine if your policy covers fire damage. Typically, you need to carry Comprehensive coverage on your RV Insurance policy in order to have fire damage protection. This is because Comprehensive coverage covers anything non-collision related, like theft, vandalism, falling object, storms, fire and more.
Adding Comprehensive coverage to your RV Insurance policy is relatively simple and usually affordable. In fact, it may only be a few extra dollars added to your monthly premium. That’s more than worth it for protection against the unexpected.
Speak with an RV Insurance Specialist at (866) 501-7335 to learn more about Specialty RV Insurance coverages and to get a free quote. You may just end up with more coverage for less money.
The information in this article is obtained from various sources. This content is offered for educational purposes only. It should not replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. The definitions, terms and coverage in a given policy may be different than those suggested here. No warranty or appropriateness for a specific purpose is expressed or implied.