Holiday safety

USFA, NFPA offer Thanksgiving fire facts, prevention tips

Practice safe cooking

An estimated 2,000 residential building fires occur on Thanksgiving Day every year, according to a report (.pdf file) released this week by the U.S. Fire Administration.

Cooking is the leading cause of these fires, resulting in an annual average of five deaths and 25 injuries.

To prevent fires, the Quincy, MA-based National Fire Protection Association offers these tips:

  • Do not use the stove if you are tired or have consumed alcohol.
  • Stay in the kitchen when frying, grilling or broiling food. If you must leave, shut off the stove.
  • If you are simmering, roasting or boiling food, check it frequently.
  • Keep flammable items such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, packaging or towels away from the stove.
NFPA offers these tips for dealing with fires:

  • Make sure you have a clear path out of the house, then leave, closing the door behind you.
  • Call 911 after you have safely exited.
  • In the event of a small grease fire, slide a lid over the pan and turn off the stove. Leave covered until pan has completely cooled.
  • If an oven fire occurs, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.

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