Dothan Fire Marshal Danny Appling says a large number of fires occurring in homes start in the kitchen.
A grant received a few months back will help firefighters and residents if a fire were to start on a kitchen stove.
Fire officials believe a device called StoveTop Firestop can help in containing such fires. The recent grant allowed them to purchase about 300 pairs, or $15,000 worth of "FireStop's."
The grant is a "community grant" meaning that all of Houston County is eligible to receive a safety upgrade. At a Houston County Volunteer Firefighter's Association Meeting Tuesday, the group agreed to partner in getting the devices out to households that need them.
Fire Marshal Appling says certain people tend to be affected most by fires starting in the kitchen.
"It's juveniles and the elderly," says Appling. "Of course juveniles don't cook that much. So we went through local groups like SARCOA and Alzheimers groups to identify the homes that need these devices. So those are the groups we are looking to do first."
Fire officials says they can name buildings and houses saved by the devices over the last 4-5 months, including a building at Beverlye Crossing.
The partnership means each volunteer fire department will install about 10 pairs of StoveTop FireStop's in their individual district.
A move that could prove to benefit firefighters and residents alike.
"These devices give us the minutes needed to get there and save a home, structure or a life possibly," says Fire Marshal Appling. "They will not turn the stove off, but if someone is home and forgot about a cooking device these can put out the fire and give them a few seconds notice with the smoke to call us so we can get there and put the fire out."
Appling says the devices are easy to install and use a magnet to attach to the stove hood. Alternative kits are available for stoves with a different set-up.
Dothan Fire Marshal Danny Appling says StoveTop FireStop's can be purchased at local fire extinguisher companies:
-Advanced Fire Protection
-Mullin's Fire Equipment
-Wiregrass Fire Protection and Welding Supply
Or you can visit the manufacturer's website: williams-pyro.com