FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) - The Red Cross, along with the Indiana Department of Homeland Security has provided cooking safety tips for Thanksgiving this year.
The American Red Cross said cooking is the leading cause of home fires. Here are tips on avoiding a fire this Thanksgiving:
- Cooks should not wear loose clothing or dangling sleeves
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Always turn off the stove when you leave the kitchen
- Check food regularly while cooking and remain in the home while cooking. Use a timer as a reminder that the stove or oven is on.
- Keep the kids away from the cooking area. Enforce a "kid-free zone" and make them stay at least three feet away from the stove.
- Keep anything that can catch fire - pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, and towels or curtains—away from the stove, oven or any other appliance in the kitchen that generates heat.
- Clean cooking surfaces on a regular basis to prevent grease buildup.
- Purchase a fire extinguisher to keep in the kitchen. Contact the local fire department to take training on the proper use of extinguishers.
- Always check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving the home to make sure all stoves, ovens, and small appliances are turned off.
- Install a smoke alarm near the kitchen, on each level of the home, near sleeping areas, and inside and outside bedrooms. Use the test button to check it each month. Replace all batteries at least once a year.
People can also use the Red Cross First Aid app, available for iPhone and Android devices. The app gives information on how to handle the most common first aid emergencies.
For more information on how to prevent a fire in the home, click here.
The Indiana Department of Homeland Security said home cooking fires are three times more likely to occur on Thanksgiving than on any other day of the year.
Here are more tips on cooking safety from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security:
Deep frying a turkey
- Never leave the fryer unattended. Most units do not have thermostat controls. If you do not watch the fryer carefully, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.
- Cover bare skin when adding or removing food.
- Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching pot or lid handles. If possible, wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from oil splatter.
- Never allow small children in an area when turkey deep frying is occurring.
Deep fryer emergencies
- Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby.
- If oil begins to smoke, immediately turn off the flame.
- Never use water to extinguish a grease fire. If the fire is manageable, use your all-purpose fire extinguisher.
- If the fire increases, immediately call the fire department or 911 for help.
VIDEO: State Farm video of deep fryer explosion
Safety in the kitchen
- Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stove. If you must leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
- Remain in the home while food is cooking and use a timer to remind you that the stove or oven is on.
- Avoid wearing loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking. Loose clothing can catch fire if it comes in contact with a gas flame or electric burner.
- Keep anything that can catch fire—pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, towels or curtains—away from your stove top.
- Clean up food and grease from burners.
Child safety in the kitchen
- Keep kids away from cooking areas by enforcing a "kid-free zone" of 3 feet around the stove.
- If you have young children, use the stove's back burners whenever possible, and turn pot handles inward to reduce the risk that pots with hot contents will be knocked over.
- Never hold a small child while cooking.
Kitchen fire prevention and suppression
- Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby. Never attempt to extinguish a grease fire with water.
- Smother small grease fires by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the stove. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.
- To suppress an oven fire simply turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
For more information about cooking safety this Thanksgiving, click here.
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