Odds increase four times for Thanksgiving kitchen fires

Just because he's plucked, doesn't mean the guest of honor can't exact some Thanksgiving revenge in the kitchen.

Just because he's plucked, doesn't mean the guest of honor can't exact some Thanksgiving revenge in the kitchen.

On Tuesday, Reno firefighters demonstrated what can go wrong when a bucket of boiling oil tips over while trying to cook a frozen turkey.

“Frying a turkey can be a fun and quick alternative to cooking your Thanksgiving meal,” said Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District Deputy Chief Dale Way. “If you plan on deep frying a turkey this Thanksgiving, residents should know that the cooking units can easily tip over, and a small amount of cooking oil encountering the burner can cause a large fire.”

According to the National Fire Protection Association, nearly four times as many home cooking fires occurred on Thanksgiving Day as on any other typical day of the year.

Today represents the second-leading day for home cooking fires. Unattended cooking was, by far, the leading contributing factor in these fires and fire fatalities.

Follow these safety tips when frying a turkey:

• Fryers should always be used outdoors, on a solid level surface a safe distance from buildings and flammable materials.

• Never use a fryer inside or on a wooden deck, under a patio cover, or in a garage.

• Do not overfill fryer.

• Never leave the fryer unattended because, without thermostat controls, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.

• Never let children or pets near the fryer when in use or after use as the oil can remain hot for hours.

• Make sure the turkey is completely thawed before it is placed in a fryer.

•  Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts and wear long sleeves and safety goggles to protect from splatter.

Cooking is always fraught with possible hazards, but because there’s so much done for Thanksgiving there are ways you can reduce that including:

• Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.

• Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently.

• Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot, and kids should stay 3 feet away.

• Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.

• Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks or bags.

• Keep knives out of the reach of children.

• Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.

• Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children — up high in a locked cabinet.

• Never leave children alone in room with a lit candle.

• Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment