If you use caution when you are manning the stove or oven you can usually keep the flames where they are supposed to be. Unfortunately things like deep frying, cooking with alcohol or accidentally placing a pot holder or towel down too close to an open flame can result in a potentially scary situation. If you’ve got a flare up that gets out of control and that can’t be put out by placing a lid on the pot, you need to be prepared to deal with it.
The best way to put out a fire is to ensure that you’ve got the right tools for the job. While water might seem like the best tool (because you are in a kitchen and have easy access), it could potentially make things worse – putting water on a grease fire can actually cause the fire to spread. You can pick up a small fire extinguisher from your local home improvement store for around $20.00 (which is an absolute bargain when you consider exactly what it can save, in fact while you are there picking one up for the kitchen grab another to keep in the basement or garage).
Once a fire starts it is critical that you quell it as quickly as possible to minimize the chance of spreading and to minimize the potential damage to your home and danger to your family. Grab your fire extinguisher, pull the pin, point toward the base of the fire and pull the trigger. Direct the extinguisher spray, moving back and forth as necessary to blanket the entire base of the fire (not the tops of the flames) until all flames are completely extinguished. Most kitchen fires can be handled very quickly with proper use of an extinguisher, but if you experience any issues at all call 911 to get professionals on the scene and get your pets and family out of the home to safety.