Thanksgiving is almost here, which means it is time again to join loved ones for a delicious home-cooked meal. While entertaining family and friends during the holidays can be fun, it is important that we not forget about basic kitchen safety during the festivities.
According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking fires are three times more likely on Thanksgiving Day than on any other day of the year. When preparing your Thanksgiving meal, follow these safety tips from the American Red Cross to ensure that your holiday feast is prepared as smoothly – and safely – as possible!
Before Cooking Begins:
- Start the day off by making proper attire choices. Cooks should avoid loose clothing and dangling sleeves while preparing food.
- Test all smoke alarms in the home and replace batteries, if necessary. Smoke alarms should be located near the kitchen, on each level of the home, and near sleeping areas.
- Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen. Contact a local fire department to learn about the proper use of fire extinguishers.
While in the Kitchen:
- Check food regularly and remain in the home while cooking. Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on.
- Be sure to stay in the kitchen if you are frying, grilling or broiling food. If you are simmering, baking roasting or broiling food, remain in the home.
- Keep all flammable items away from the stove, oven, or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat. This includes pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or even curtains.
- Children should stay away from the cooking area. Enforce a “kid-free” zone and have kids stay at least three feet away from the stove.
After You Have Finished:
- Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens, and small appliances are turned off.