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November 17, 2022

Hosting Thanksgiving dinner? Keep these tips in mind

Did You Know: Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires in the United States. It has three times the average number of reported home structure fires due to cooking equipment.

Thanksgiving meal on a table.

General cooking safety

When preparing your holiday feast, here are some tips to avoid being a statistic this holiday season.
  • Focus: Stay focused on the feast and set timers! Always keep an eye on food cooking on the stove top and in the oven.
  • Before making your fancy feast, get prepared:
    • Remove potential tripping hazards out of the kitchen.
    • Locate your oven mitts and other heat-protective tools.
    • Have a Class B fire extinguisher (and know how to use it).
    • Move anything that could catch fire away from heat sources.
    • Don’t wear loose clothing while cooking or you could catch fire.
  • Thaw the bird: Make sure to completely thaw out your bird before roasting, smoking, grilling or deep-frying it. Trust us on this one. A thawed-out bird is a better-cooking bird.
  • If a fire breaks out:
    • Turn off the heat source.
    • Don’t open the oven door until fire is completely extinguished.
    • Never throw water on grease/oil fires or it could spread.
    • If you can do so safely, smother a stove top fire with a metal lid, cookie sheet or pan. If the fire is too out of hand, use a fire extinguisher.

For emergencies dial 911.

A person deep frying a turkey.

Deep frying dangers

  • Location: When deep-frying a turkey, always use the fryer outdoors on a flat surface safely away from structures, wooden decks and covered patios. No matter what the weather is like, DO NOT use the fryer in a garage.
  • Watch: Monitor the temperature of the oil with a thermometer to prevent the oil from overheating and catching fire. If the oil begins to smoke, immediately turn the gas off.
  • Thaw: Again, ensure the turkey is COMPLETELY THAWED to prevent a fire or explosion hazard.
  • Kids: Keep children and pets away from the fryer to prevent tipping, even after the turkey is out. The oil is dangerously hot for hours.

Person washing dishes

Protect your pipes

  • Don’t drain: Never dispose of fats, oil, grease or greasy food down the garbage disposal or drain.
  • Dispose properly: For small amounts of grease, pour into a lidded container or absorb it with paper towels to dispose of it in a trash receptacle.
  • Recycle used oil: For large amounts of grease or oil from deep frying a turkey, save and dispose of it at the City of Bryan’s Used Oil and Tire Recycling Center that will be open on Saturday, Nov. 26 from 8 a.m. – noon.
 
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