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Thanksgiving - a Time for Family, Turkey and… Household Fires?

The threat of fires in the kitchen triples on Thanksgiving Day. Keep your family, your home and your bird safe from harm.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), three times as many home cooking fires occur on Thanksgiving than any other day of the year, and cooking is the leading cause of residential structural fires on this day in particular. 

How do you keep your home and family safe from a fire this Thanksgiving? 

• Check all fire alarms are working by pushing the test button and replacing any low batteries. Working smoke alarms reduce fire related deaths by half, according to the NFPA. 
• Use a sturdy pan to cook your turkey; flimsy foil pans could leak and cause a fire in the oven.
• When cooking on the stovetop, never leave the kitchen unattended. Unattended cooking is the leading cause for home cooking fires.
• Deep frying, gaining in popularity, poses the greatest risk of cooking fires on Thanksgiving. If you must deep fry, be sure to educate yourself on the dangers and how to fry safely
• Secure all loose clothing and hair when cooking.
• Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen at all times.
• Keep children out of the kitchen when cooking, or at least three feet away from the stove.

Cooking fires can be scary and dangerous if handled incorrectly. The U.S. Fire Administration reports that more than half (55 percent) of home cooking fire injuries happen when people try to fight the fire themselves. Acting appropriately and quickly can keep the fire from getting out of control.

If your oven catches fire, close the door or keep it closed and turn off the oven immediately.  Don’t open the door! The lack of oxygen should suffocate the flames- if it continues to smoke call the fire department.

If a pan on your stovetop catches fire, grab an oven mitt and clamp on the lid tightly, removing it from the heat source and turning off the stove. Again, no oxygen, no fire. Can’t find the lid? Use your fire extinguisher, aiming at the base of the pan, not the flames.

Never use water to extinguish a grease fire! Water can cause the grease to splatter, can spread the fire and/or cause injuries. 

Always play it safe. If any fire continues to spread, get everyone out of the house and call 911!
Not sure if you are protected in the event of a fire? Contact your local, independent insurance agent to make sure your home or rental insurance is up to date and adequate.

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