THE fire service expects a sharp rise in blazes during Euro 2012, following a shocking increase of incidents during the last big internationall football tournament.
Kitchen fires went up by nearly a quarter during World Cup 2010 with 39 blazes in just one month.
To prevent a further rise during this year’s European Championships, firefighters are urging the public not to mix cooking with alcohol and never to leave cooking unattended.
The region’s firefighters tackled more than 300 cooking-related house fires last year alone, resulting in 75 injuries.
During the Diamond Jubilee weekend firefighters went to seven more kitchen fires mostly caused by cooking being left on the hob.
East Area Manager Steve Makepeace, said: “Expectations for the England football team might be low this summer, but sadly we fully expect to see another rise is kitchen fires as millions settle down to watch the tournament and probably have a drink at the same time.
“Alcohol and cooking just don’t mix. It makes you unco-ordinated and more likely to have a fire, and less likely to escape if you do have one.
“So if you’ve been to the pub to watch the match, grab a takeaway on the way home instead. And if you just can’t tear your eyes from penalty shoot out, turn the cooker off and take the pan off the hob.”
The service has launched a campaign called Kitchen Nightmares which aims to reduce cooking-related fires which account for half of all the house fires in South Yorkshire.
To back the drive, the public are being asked to keep electrical leads and fabrics well away from the hob and never use a chip pan, keep an eye on cooking at all times and never, ever leave it unattended and to switch off cooking appliances when finished cooking.
For more information on the campaign, visit www.syfire.gov.uk