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Tips for cooking safely on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is peak day for cooking fires

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 23, 2015) — Thanksgiving is the No. 1 day for cooking fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Christmas and Christmas Eve are the second and third biggest days for cooking fires. In 2013, U.S. firefighters responded to roughly 1,550 home fires involving cooking equipment, 230 percent above the average number of fires per day.

Thanksgiving dinner
Thanksgiving dinner

With that in mind Kentuckians are encouraged to practice safety when cooking over the holidays. One key is to never leave food on the stove unattended, said Kentucky State Fire Marshal William Swope.

“Being aware of fire safety while preparing your holiday meal can mean the difference between calling family and friends to the dinner table or calling the fire department to put out a fire,” said Swope.

The state fire marshal and NFPA recommend the following cooking safety tips:

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop 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 3 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 the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks or bags.
  • 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.
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.

The state fire marshal’s office in the Division of Fire Prevention is an agency of the Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction within the Public Protection Cabinet. Additional fire prevention safety tips are available on the agency’s website at http://dhbc.ky.gov/sfm/Pages/Safety.aspx.