How to avoid kitchen fires this Thanksgiving

Published: Nov. 25, 2021 at 9:48 AM CST
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) -The big day is finally here and whether you are preparing the turkey or just a side dish, firefighters want you to stay safe in the kitchen before the big feast.

First, remove any loose items that are around the stove or oven. This includes towels, oven mitts, wooden spoons or other items that can catch fire.

“There are types of fires that can start with basically your combustible materials, your wooden utensils and stuff,” said Battalion Chief Tom Cooksey with the Logan Rogersville Fire Department. “Those can you can use water on those and actually extinguish them or use a fire extinguisher.”

When cooking on the stove, make sure the handles are not hanging over the edge where a child could pull the pot or pan off the stove and burn themselves. Firefighters say it’s best not to allow small children within three feet of the stove when an adult is cooking.

“Keep a three feet zone around the stove that’s a kids-free zone,” said Cooksey. “ Make sure that people stay away from you so you don’t cause that trip hazard and cause it to spill and cause a burden on them.”

If someone happens to get burned, place a cool cloth on the wound and keep it covered so it won’t get infected. If it blisters, seek emergency care.

“Do not cook if you’ve been drinking alcohol because that can slow your reaction time,” said Cooksey. “Another big thing is while you’re cooking, don’t ever leave the kitchen. If you have to leave for any period of time, even if it’s a short amount, go ahead and shut the burners off.”

If you choose to fry your turkey, make sure it is completely thawed and slowly lower it into the fryer to prevent the grease from spilling over and catching fire.

“The other type that we see a lot of is grease fires,” said Cooksey. “Anytime you have a grease fire, the best thing to do is to slide a lid over the pan, shut the burner off, and allow it to start cooling down. Do not remove the lid until it’s cooled down completely.”

However much time you plan on spending in the kitchen, be sure to stay safe this holiday season.

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