SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -

This year when you're fixing your Thanksgiving dinners, you might want to think about a few safety precautions. Some advice from the pros: stay in the kitchen with the food while it's on the stovetop, keep kids away, keep anything flammable at least three feet from the stove or oven and make sure your smoke detectors and batteries are up and running.

The best way to put out a kitchen fire by yourself is by putting a tight fitting lid on top and immediately turn off the heat. That way it cuts off the oxygen and heat, the two things needed to make a fire. Also keep a fire extinguisher close by and know how to use it.

"It's common belief for people that if you get a grease fire, to pour flour on it or even baking soda, baking soda will work, baking powder is something that won't work, it actually adds fuel to the fire" said Springfield fire marshal Ben Basham.

Cara Restelli Erwin, education specialist for the Springfield Fire Department, says it's the job of firefighters to put out the fire, so don't be afraid to dial 911.

"It's not their (residents) job to fight the fire, it's the fire department's job to put out a fire.  However, if that fire is small and contained and hasn't grown over the size of that original pot or pan that is on the stove, sometimes you can safely put it out and help reduce injuries and even deaths," said Erwin.

The Springfield Fire Department has seen about 50 fires a year for the last few years and about six fires in the last few months.  Several of those have been from cooking or kitchen related incidents, a reason to be extra careful when preparing your turkey or thanksgiving dinner this year.

"We always want to make sure that we share those tips to try to keep the holidays bright and to make sure no one has a devastating fire," said Erwin.

The National Fire Protection Association says cooking equipment is the leading cause of house fires.