Cooking fires triple on Thanksgiving Day

In the US, the number of cooking fires more than triples on Thanksgiving Day, according to the Consumer Products Safety Commission. Here are a few cooking tips to help ensure a safer turkey day:

·         Stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food – unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires.

·         Keep things that can burn like towels, paper, curtains, etc. away from the stove top.

·         Wear short, close-fitting or tightly rolled sleeves when cooking – loose clothing can catch fire.

·         Check your home’s smoke alarms by simply pressing the test button.

“Frying food” is the greatest risk for cooking fires, says the United States Fire Administration. Deep fried turkeys have become a popular holiday treat, but outdoor propane-fueled turkey fryers that immerse the turkey in hot oil, create serious safety concerns. For instance:  

·         Hot oil may spill onto the open burner and create a fire. Some fryers have as much as 35 quarts of oil – that’s nearly nine gallons!!

·         Cooking oil may be heated beyond its cooking temperatures and the vapors can ignite.

·         Many fryers can easily tip over and spill hot, scalding oil onto anyone or anything nearby.

·         The fryer’s sides, lids and handles get extremely hot and can cause severe burns.

Did you know that Underwriters Laboratory Inc., a global product safety testing and certification source with more than a century of experience, does not certify any turkey fryer with the trusted UL mark?

“On Thanksgiving or any other day, leave deep-fried turkeys to the culinary professionals,” said Captain Mike Hall.

Video from a propane-fueled outdoor turkey fryer hazard demonstration is at Facebook.com/OlatheFire. The video shows a partially frozen turkey being placed in a propane-fueled fryer and an incredible reaction of hot oil bubbling out of the fryer and onto its burner. The scalding oil – which is hot enough to cause a severe burn in less than one second – also covers the wood surface below.

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