5 min read
Thanksgiving is a holiday filled with family, friends, food, and fun. However, it’s also a time when an excess of cooking and meal preparation can lead to the potential for house fires. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires, with three times the average number of incidents occurring on the holiday.
Fires are one of the most devastating incidents that can happen to your home. Events as devastating as this can become more unfortunate during the holidays. This is why we want to help you take the necessary precautions as you celebrate with family and friends.
7 Ways to Prevent an Accidental Fire During the Holidays
Here, we share our top Thanksgiving fire safety tips. Follow these simple guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday for you and your loved ones.
1. Never Leave Cooking Food Unattended
The leading cause of kitchen fires during Thanksgiving Day is unattended cooking, with a 73.5% incidence rate. When it comes to Thanksgiving safety, you must remain vigilant about what’s going on in your kitchen. Keep an eye on your turkey at all times, and be sure to check its temperature regularly to know when it’s done.
Vigilance should also extend to other types of food you’re planning to serve. If you need to leave the kitchen for any reason, ask someone to watch over your cooking or utilize timers to remind you to return as soon as possible.
2. Clear Your Cooking Area
A clean and clutter-free cooking area is essential for Thanksgiving fire safety. A slight kitchen mishap can quickly turn disastrous if you’re not careful about the clutter around your kitchen. For instance, you must ensure that your stovetop and oven, and their immediate vicinity, are clear of any flammable items, such as pot holders, wooden utensils, food packaging, and even loose clothing.
3. Check Your Smoke Alarms
Smoke alarms are your first line of defense against a fire in your home. They detect fires and warn you when the level of smoke is above a certain level, allowing you to address the flames immediately or get your loved ones to safety.
Check and test your smoke alarms before Thanksgiving to make sure they’re functioning properly. Ensure that there is at least one smoke alarm near your kitchen and another in your sleeping area. If you don’t have smoke alarms or need additional ones, now is the perfect time to invest in this essential safety (and potentially life-saving) tool.
4. Use Caution with Turkey Fryers
Fried turkey is a delicious Thanksgiving tradition for many families, but it can also be a significant fire hazard. Suppose you choose to use a turkey fryer. In that case, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and take extra precautions to avoid a fire.
Here are a few Thanksgiving safety measures to observe when using a turkey fryer:
- Always use your fryer outside, away from buildings and flammable materials.
- Fully thaw and dry your turkey before frying to avoid splattering oil.
- Monitor the temperature of the oil carefully to avoid overheating and combustion
- Never leave a fryer unattended.
- Keep children and pets at a safe distance at all times.
5. Be Cautious with Candles
Candles can add a touch of warmth and beauty to your Thanksgiving décor. However, they can also pose a significant fire risk when unattended. Apply the following candle safety tips to add to your home’s ambiance safely:
- Place candles at least 12 inches away from flammable items, such as curtains, tablecloths, and decorations.
- Always extinguish candles before leaving the room or going to bed.
- Never leave children unattended around burning candles.
As a safer alternative, consider using battery-operated flameless candles to achieve the same ambiance without the risk of an open flame.
6. Check Your Fire Extinguisher
Keep a fire extinguisher within easy reach, and make sure you know how to use it. Being prepared for an emergency with a charged and operational fire extinguisher can make all the difference in preventing a small kitchen fire from growing into a dangerous and damaging blaze.
**Tip: Stand with your feet firmly on the ground and aim the nozzle at the base of the fire, pull the pin, and squeeze the top of the handle or lever. Sweep from side to side until the fire is out.
(If you need help with fire extinguisher clean-up, our Restoration 1 team can also assist)
7. Have a Fire Escape Plan
While prevention is the key to Thanksgiving fire safety, it’s just as important to prepare for the unexpected. In the event of a fire, every family member should know their home’s fire escape plan and the quickest route to exit the home. Practice your plan as a family at least twice a year to ensure you’re prepared for an emergency.
Keep Your Property Protected During the Holidays With Restoration 1
Practicing safety during Thanksgiving can spell the difference between a delightful holiday experience and a tragic event. As you and your loved ones share a warm, joyous meal, it is crucial to remain vigilant of potential fire hazards that can dampen your celebrations. By following these Thanksgiving safety tips, you can focus on what’s most important during the holiday – spending quality time with your family and friends.
However, accidents can and do happen. If you find yourself facing the aftermath of a fire this holiday season, our team at Restoration 1 of Oak Harbor is always here to help. We specialize in property restoration and work quickly and effectively to help you recover and restore your home to its pre-loss condition.
Contact Restoration 1 of Oak Harbor today to schedule a free consultation!