According to research, majority of serious household accidents are caused within the kitchen. The way in which a kitchen is set up influences the flow and interaction within the space. Everything from the position of the appliances to the layout of the work tops plays a large part in the safety of the kitchen.
Apart from the general setting out of the kitchen there are other factors that will minimise or eliminate the chances of accidents completely. Some of these easy to follow steps help in reducing the chances of accidents in the kitchen.
Basic rules within the kitchen
1. Turn pot handles away from the front of the stove as children can easily grab the pots.
2. Knives should be stored in wooden blocks or drawers away from the reach of children
3. Spills must be wiped away immediately to prevent slips and falls
4. Wash your hands before handling food and after handling meat and poultry
5. Never cook while wearing dangling jewels
6. A fire extinguisher should be placed within the kitchen and you must know how to use it
7. Chemical based cleaners should be stored properly and away from stoves
8. Make sure all wires on your appliances are not frayed
9. Put a childproof lock not only on your cabinets but also on your oven
10. Keep dish towels, pot holders and oven mitts away from the stove
11. Keep matches and lighters away from the reach of children
12. Don’t answer or talk on the phone while cooking – you can be distracted and injuries can result.
13. Always use a step stool to access high cabinets
Kitchen storage solutions
The manner in which items are stored within or around a kitchen determine the safety of the space and thanks to kitchen manufacturers and their investments in new technology and innovation. Some of the storage solutions we find today include:
Blind corner cabinets: these range from pull out trays to the standard lazy Susan. These easily accessible cabinets help in making use of spaces that would have otherwise been considered a ‘dead’ space.
Pantry systems: Some of the smartest kitchen cabinets that allow the user to store away large amounts of everyday use items on functional shelves that are not only easily accessible but also stylish. These systems are available in tall columns, as base cabinets or even wall cabinets and usually consist of durable chrome baskets.
Drawers: The choice of selecting drawers over door cabinets allows for users to access pots and pans easier as compared to cabinets. In cases of the cabinets reaching further into the cabinets to get out a pan can prove to be quite a task for many whereas with drawers the user can easily reach all items within the drawers without much of a hassle. Dividers in drawers help organise the drawers according to your needs.
Backsplash accessories: Hooks that hold all sorts of kitchen accessories from bottle top openers to ladles help in easily access kitchen items.
Portable shelves: Heavy kitchen equipment and appliances can easily be used on these pop up shelves that are pulled out of cabinets when needed and instantly tucked away once used. These shelves also add extra worktop space in tighter spaces.
Jaz is the general manager and interior designer at Citron Decor Centre, specialists in high quality bathroom and kitchen decor products.