According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Thanksgiving is the leading day for home fires involving cooking equipment. In fact, in 2019, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 1,400 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving, the peak day for such fires. Unattended cooking was the leading contributing factor to fires and fire deaths. Cooking caused half (49%) of all reported home fires and more than two of every five (42%) home fire injuries, and it is the second leading cause of home fire deaths (20%) in 2015-2019.
With proper planning and a cautious eye, families can do their part to ensure that this holiday stays joyous from start to finish. Avoid common mistakes with these Thanksgiving safety tips from the experts at ServiceMaster Restore:
What To Do:
- Inspect fire alarms before Thanksgiving Day. Batteries should be replaced once a year, and each fire alarm should be tested monthly to ensure it works as intended. Before Thanksgiving, hit the test button on your fire alarms to make sure they can alert you if anything goes wrong during the holiday.
- Check food regularly while you cook. Use timers to remind you when certain items need to be inspected and when others are finished cooking, especially if you’re working on multiple dishes.
- Keep children away from the cooking area. There should be at least three feet between young children and the stove to help ensure that they stay safe.
- Clean surfaces regularly to reduce grease buildup. An accumulation of grease could help ignite a fire if one breaks out.
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby. If a fire does break out, having a fire extinguisher nearby to douse the flames quickly can save you from significant loss and destruction.
- Ensure all cooking equipment is turned off at the end of the day. This includes ovens, stoves, fryers, small appliances, and other items you use to cook your dishes.
What NOT To Do
- Never leave cooking food unattended. When frying, grilling, boiling, or baking, it’s crucial to stay in the kitchen until the food is finished. If an accident happens or a fire breaks out, you can react quickly to minimize any damage. If you must leave the kitchen anytime, turn off the stove.
- Never wear loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking. These items can cause spills, get stained or even catch fire. If you are cooking in the kitchen, wear proper clothing.
- Never keep anything that can catch fire near the stove, oven, or other heat-generating appliance. This includes potholders, oven mitts, food packaging, and wooden utensils.
Keeping these cooking safety tips in mind can help avoid any accidents this Thanksgiving. As winter approaches, use our winter holiday fire safety tips to help keep your loved ones safe during all your holiday festivities. Then, read our top 3 home fire safety tips to protect your home and your family year-round.
We know that accidents can still happen no matter how careful and prepared you are. If a fire does occur in your home, call on the experts at ServiceMaster Restore. We’re available 24/7/365 to help get your home back to normal after a disaster. We can restore your home quickly with the proper expertise, tools, and innovative equipment. Let ServiceMaster Restore turn your uncertainty into confidence. You can learn more about our residential fire and smoke damage removal services to better prepare for the unexpected.
From ServiceMaster Restore, we hope you have a wonderful time with your close friends and family during this holiday season.