Thanksgiving is the leading day for home cooking fires, and many home fires and related injuries are caused by unattended cooking. During the hustle and bustle of this holiday season, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security and the State Fire Marshal are reminding citizens to remain attentive in the kitchen.
Indiana State Fire Marshal Jim Greeson. “Every holiday season, cooking is a leading cause of home structure fires.”
The following are some important safety tips that are applicable year-round, but are especially important during the holiday season.
-Stay in the kitchen while cooking food. If there is a need to leave the kitchen even for a short period, turn off the stove.
-Regularly check food that is cooking and use a timer to avoid forgetting items.
-Keep any flammable objects such as oven mitts, utensils, food packages and towels away from the stovetop.
-Use the stove’s back burners whenever possible.
-Clean up food and grease from burners and stovetops, and be sure that the oven is clean and free from residue.
When deep-frying a turkey, up to five gallons of oil must be heated before placing the turkey into the device. Tests have shown that some turkey fryers are not sturdy and can easily tip over, allowing hot oil to spill and creating a serious risk of fire or scalding.
When deep-frying a turkey, follow these safety tips:
-Cook outside on a level surface several feet away from any building. Never use turkey fryers on wooden desks, balconies or inside garages.
-Don’t overfill the fryer with oil. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to determine the proper amount of oil to use.
-Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and dry before placing it in the fryer.
-Never leave the fryer unattended.
-Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching the pot or lid holders.