Lombard Fire Department is reminding residents that more cooking home fires occur on Thanksgiving Day, than any other day of the year, with three times as many home cooking fires reported. According to FEMA, for each year from 2014 to 2016, an estimated 2,400 residential building fires were reported to fire departments in the U.S. on Thanksgiving Day and caused an estimated 5 deaths, 25 injuries and $19 million in property loss.
But with preparation and common sense, many home cooking fires can be avoided.
Follow these simple tips to reduce the risk of fire in your home during Thanksgiving:
- Do not leave stoves, ovens, and ranges unattended—stay in the kitchen so you can keep your eyes on the food.
- Make sure to keep children and pets away from the stove to avoid serious burns.
- Roll up your sleeves or wear short sleeves while cooking so your clothes do not start on fire.
- Set timers to keep track of cook times.
- Keep pot holders and food wrappers away from heat sources while cooking.
- After your guests leave, be sure all cooking appliances are off and all candles are blown out.
- Call 9-1-1 immediately if an oven fire occurs!
When deep frying turkeys there are a number of things to remember:
- Only use an approved turkey fryer with four legs and a built-in thermostat so proper oil temperature can be maintained. Make sure the fryer cannot tip over, a major cause of most fires.
- Fry outdoors, away from buildings and other combustible items. Never use a fryer indoors. Keep children and pets away while frying.
- Follow instructions on what size turkey should be used, how it should be cooked and what type of oil to use.
- Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and dry. Lower the turkey into the hot oil slowly.
- Never leave the fryer unattended. Wear fry gloves; regular oven mittens may not be insulated enough.
- Splashing oil can cause a flash fire and serious burns, so be careful.