16 Jul 2012
One in 10 house fires are started by unattended chip or hot food pans, according to figures collected by the Conservatives.
Statistics from Scotland’s eight fire services showed that in 2011, 10.4% of fires were caused by chip pans, compared to 9.6% in 2010 and 2009.
The figures varied from region to region, with Lothian and Borders recording the highest number, with 22.7% of fires caused by chip pans in 2011.
The Conservatives said the number of fires of this type was cause for concern and called for an awareness campaign to highlight the dangers of leaving chip pans unattended.
The party’s local government spokeswoman Margaret Mitchell said: “The number of fires in Scotland caused by chip pans has risen this year and that must be a cause for concern.
“There used to be awareness campaigns warning the public about the risks of leaving hot food pans unattended.
“There has been speculation that a increase in house fires has been caused by the smoking ban and rising prices in pubs, leading to more people drinking at home.
“Our fire services are under enough pressure without having to deal with such a high volume of unnecessary calls.
“So many fires are avoidable, but that is particularly true of hot food pan fires, so the idea of a campaign needs to be revisited.”
Copyright Press Association 2012