THE danger posed by chip pan fires was demonstrated by Wisbech firefighters on Thursday.
As part of Kitchen Safety Week, the team from Wisbech fire station set up a saucepan of oil on a gas burner to show what happens when it catches fire.
Shoppers in the town centre flocked to the set-up, situated next to Boots in the Horsefair, to watch the demonstration and receive free fire safety advice.
A firefighter in full safety gear heated the oil until it caught fire, then showed the crowd how to safely put out the flames with a damp tea towel. He then showed what happens if you put water on the fire.
The watching people were visibly shocked as the flames billowed out from the saucepan, shooting at least fifteen feet into the air.
The sobering demonstration was backed up by warnings from firefighters to make sure people have working smoke alarms and to not get distracted while cooking.
Firefighter Phil Pilbeam said while most people know the dangers of being distracted in the kitchen, it can come along unexpectedly.
A fire in March started recently after a woman put a pizza in the oven. As she went outside to put the box in the bin, she heard her neighbour calling for help after falling in the garden. She went next-door to help and when she returned to her house, the pizza had burned and set her kitchen on fire.
For a free fire safety check contact 01945-428600.