For most, the kitchen is the heart of the home, especially during the holidays. From testing family recipes to decorating cakes and cookies, everyone enjoys being part of the preparations.
So keeping fire safety top of mind in the kitchen during this joyous but hectic time is important, especially when there’s a lot of activity and people at home. As you start preparing your holiday schedule and organizing that large family feast, remember, by following a few simple safety tips you can enjoy time with your loved ones and keep yourself and your family safer from fire.
Top safety tips
- Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stove top 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 three 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 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.
- Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks or bags.
- Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.
Educate your community
Thanksgiving provides an ideal opportunity to educate your community about the importance of cooking safety. This kit has everything you need from a ready-to-use press release, safety tip sheets, printable activities, lesson plans and social media cards. DOWNLOAD THE KIT. (zip)
The use of turkey fryers
Turkey fryers that use cooking oil are not safe. These fryers use large amounts of oil at high temperatures, which can cause devastating burns. If you want a fried turkey for your Thanksgiving meal, purchase it from a grocery store, restaurant or buy a fryer that does not use oil.
NFPA joins CPSC to demonstrate the fire dangers of turkey fryers in this live burn. NFPA strongly discourages the use of turkey fryers.
Visit Sparky.org for more fun Thanksgiving activities for kids and families.
Social media cards
Download these social media cards and share these Thanksgiving fire safety tips on Facebook and Twitter. Link to www.nfpa.org/thanksgiving. All cards are in JPG format.
Thanksgiving fire facts
- Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires with more than three times the daily average for such incidents. Christmas Day and Christmas Eve ranked second and third, with both having nearly twice the daily average.
- Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in cooking fires and fire deaths.
- Cooking causes half (49 percent) of all reported home fires and more than two of every five (42 percent) home fire injuries, and it is the second leading cause of home fire deaths (20 percent).
Source: NFPA Applied Research