BARKSDALE AIR FORCE BASE, La. --
Thanksgiving can be a joyful day, filled with plenty of family, friends and food, but it can also be a dangerous day if proper cooking precautions are not followed.
According to a recent report by the National Fire Protection Association, the incidence of home cooking fires on Thanksgiving day is three times higher than any other day of the year.
One of the riskier methods of preparing the holiday feast, according to NFPA statistics, is deep-frying turkey. While the NFPA does not recommend frying turkeys due to safety concerns, the practice has been gaining popularity for years.
Senior Master Sgt. Landon Holloway, 307th Bomb Wing safety and occupational health specialist, offered tips on frying a turkey safely.
“Make sure the turkey is completely thawed,” he urged. “Even a partially frozen turkey will cause the grease to overflow and generate a fire.”
He also urged anyone frying turkeys to keep a fire extinguisher handy, as putting water can make a grease fire worse.
Other tips for safe turkey-frying include:
• Cook outdoors at a distance not less than 25 feet from buildings or other flammable materials.
• Never leave a frying turkey unattended. Oil can easily catch fire if it becomes too hot, so heat levels must be continuously monitored.
• Keep children and pets away from the turkey fryer at all times.
• To avoid oil spillover, do not overfill the fryer.