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OvenKing recently came across a flyer titled “Fires in Kitchen Extract Ventilation Systems”, produced by the London boroughs of Hammersmith & Fulham, and Kensington & Chelsea in association with the London Fire Brigade. It made for some very interesting reading and enforces many of the points we try to get across to customers when we quote for commercial cleaning work.

Fires in kitchen extract ventilation systems

Did you know?

  • London Fire Brigade is called to many fires which start in the kitchen extraction systems and ductwork of businesses like pubs, cafés, restaurants and hotels.
  • There is one fire a day. Many of these fires are due to inadequate maintenance and cleaning.
  • You can reduce fire risks by carrying out regular cleaning of your kitchen extraction and ventilation systems.
  • Grease build up causes an environmental health hazard by providing a breeding ground for bacteria.

Fire risks

The filters fitted to canopy/hoods of kitchen grease extraction systems (aka kitchen extract ventilation systems) are not designed to remove all traces of grease from the air drawn through the system. This mean invariably much the grease is deposited within the inside surfaces of the ventilation ducting, canopies and upon the extraction fan surfaces. This creates a major fire risk. In the image below you can see a before and after of a grease extraction system fan, because these items are out of sight they are often out of mind!

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Fires that begin within kitchen extraction systems ducting are very difficult to stop. Ductwork is often inaccessible, and fire may break out of the ductwork into other buildings. Damage is often serious and businesses are forced to close, it can take up to six months to recover from a fire and many businesses will never re-open.

If business owners haven’t kept up regular maintenance on their kitchen extraction system they may also face an uphill struggle trying to get their insurance policy to pay out in the event of a claim. Many insurance companies stipulate all safety systems, especially kitchen extraction systems should be maintained in accordance with manufacturer recommendations. Many insurance companies are also specifically requesting sight of TR19 certificates to ensure compliance is met.

Regular cleaning and maintenance will reduce the risk of fire and it prevents the build-up of grease deposits and bacteria within your kitchen extraction system.

Commercial-Cleaning

Did you also know?

Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, your extract systems need to be included in your fire risk assessment with action taken to minimise any potential fire risk to buildings and occupants.

Failure to carry out proper cleaning and maintenance could lead to a breach of Environmental Health regulations
and as previously mentioned could invalidate your fire insurance policy.

How can OvenKing help your business?

OvenKing provide businesses with a free inspection of their kitchen extract ventilation systems, and if the system is to be found in need of a clean, provide a free no obligation quote for the works required. Upon completion of a clean or a satisfactory inspection, OvenKing can also issue a TR19 certificate to ensure you have the required evidence of the ducting condition at that date. We are also happy to advise on future maintenance schedules and correct record keeping.

OvenKing are the contracted service supplier for commercial kitchen, oven and kitchen extract ventilation system cleaning to the Dorset and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

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Credit to the London boroughs of Hammersmith & Fulham, and Kensington & Chelsea in association with the London Fire Brigade for many of the facts and figures quoted in this article. Taken from; Fires in Kitchen Extract Ventilation Systems A5 flyer.