Home kitchens are filled with products such as cooking equipment, sharp knives, and cleaning supplies that can cause a variety of serious injuries, even death.
Beware: Dangers are Lurking in the Kitchen
For most families, the kitchen is one of the busiest rooms in the house. Kitchens are often the hub of the home where meals are prepared and served as families gather for daily conversations. Although kitchens are filled with daily laughter and family activities, they are also filled with dangers that cause serious accidents and injuries. These injuries are sending thousands of people to the hospital emergency room every year.
According to the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA), kitchen stoves and ovens are responsible for an estimated 172,000 home fires in the U. S. each year. The main culprits are stoves left unattended while cooking, ranges that malfunction, dirty ovens that cause drip fires, and grilling mishaps that cause burns and explosions.
Microwaves and deep fryers also contribute to household fires and injuries. Putting metal objects or aluminum foil in the microwave causes sparks that can ignite, while styrofoam plates and cups and paper bags can melt releasing toxic chemicals. Deep fryers, especially older models, use oil that heats to extremely high temperatures which can cause severe skin burns, as well as kitchen grease fires. Burns from grill explosions and grease fires cause some of the most severe burn injuries seen by personal injury lawyers.
Knives are kitchen essentials found in every household kitchen. These utilitarian objects are used for cutting, chopping, and shredding vegetables, cutting fruits and coring apples, and slicing meats and bread. One slip of a sharp kitchen knife can result in serious lacerations, puncture wounds, and even amputated fingers. For safety, sharp knives should always be cleaned with caution, stored in knife holders or drawers, and always kept away from children.
Spaces under the kitchen sink provide an enclosed area commonly used to store household cleaning supplies like dishwashing liquids and powders, bleach, ammonia, spray cleaners, aerosol sprays, hand sanitizers, and cleaning rags and sponges.
Many cleaning supplies contain hazardous chemicals. Chemicals can cause poisoning, breathing problems, skin burns and rashes, and even death, especially in small children. Dirty sponges collect bacteria that can cause food poisoning, e. coli, and salmonella. Using dirty sponges for cleaning countertops and kitchen surfaces can easily spread deadly germs throughout the family.