ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Dozens of fires that have destroyed homes in Georgia have one thing in common.
Unattended cooking is the number one cause of residential fires. That's according to Assistant Fire Chief Sebon Burns with the Albany Fire Department.
Stove top fires are responsible for thousands of house fires around the country and they account dozens of deaths and hundreds of injuries.
But firefighters say there is a product that has proven effective in stopping stove fires before they spread.
A canister filled with a mixture of sodium bicarbonate powder attached magnetically above the stove serves as a fire suppressant.
If the flames hit the canister, it explodes. The powder inside drops down and suppresses the flames and the fire is put out.
"The popping that you heard is the can itself popping open," explained Assistant Chief Burns. "[The flames] caused the can to shake and vibrate and when it's placed properly between the two burners, the manufacturer says it will extinguish a fire on one or both burners."
One brand, called StoveTop Firestop is a fire suppression product for residential use. And while these products can save lives and property, there is one sure way to prevent kitchen fires all together.
"[People] need to stay with the stove. And if you leave the stove area take something with you that will remind you that you have something on the stove," said Burns.
The kitchen fire suppression cans retail for about $50 for a pair, and fire officials highly recommend them to apartment complex residents.