Nov. 20, 2020
Thanksgiving Cooking Safety Tips from
Pensacola Fire Department
With the Thanksgiving holiday right around the corner, the Pensacola Fire Department encourages residents to practice safe cooking now and throughout the year. Most home fires and home fire injuries are caused by cooking. Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires.
“While you plan your menus, also plan for fire safety – check your smoke alarms and make sure they are working," said Pensacola Fire Marshal Annie Bloxson.
Here are a few tips to follow:
- Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking at high temperatures.
- Stay home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently. If you leave the kitchen, set a timer to remind yourself food is simmering or baking.
- Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the stove.
- Wear short or close-fitting sleeves while cooking on the stove.
- Keep pan/pot handles turned toward the back of the stove.
Risks to consider when using a turkey fryer:
- Turkey fryers can easily tip over, spilling hot oil across a large area.
- An overfilled cooking pot will cause oil to spill over when the turkey is placed inside. You can test the level of oil needed by filling the pot with water first and dipping the turkey inside to see how much the water rises.
- A partially frozen turkey will cause hot oil to splatter.
- Turkey fryers can easily overheat and start a fire.
- Even a small amount of cooking oil spilling on a hot burner can cause a large fire.
- Without thermostat controls, deep fryers can overheat oil to the point of starting a fire.
- The pot, lid and handles of a turkey fryer can get dangerously hot and cause burn injuries.
Safety tips to follow when deep-frying a turkey:
- Place the fryer outside on a flat surface that cannot burn, such as cement.
- Place the fryer at least 10 feet from anything that can catch fire. This includes anything overhead like your house eaves or branches.
- Keep children and pets at least 3 feet from the fryer.
- Use a fryer with thermostat controls. Without these, the oil can heat to the point of catching fire.
- Thaw the turkey completely before cooking to keep ice crystals from splattering oil.
- Use potholders and oven mitts when handling the turkey.