Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires involving cooking equipment. In fact, cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and related injuries. Between 2005 and 2009,U.S.fire departments responded to an estimated average of 155,400 home fires per year involving cooking equipment. These fires caused an annual average of 390 civilian deaths, 4,800 civilian injuries, and $771 million in direct property damage
Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) urges citizens to keep fire safety in mind when preparing holiday meals. To reduce the risk of cooking fires this holiday, PF&R recommends the following safety tips:
- Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.
- Stay in the home when cooking your turkey and check on it frequently.
- Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot and kids should stay three (3) feet away.
- Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy or coffee could cause serious burns.
- Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks or bags.
- Keep knives out of the reach of children.
- Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.
- Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children — up high in a locked cabinet.
- Never leave children alone in room with a lit a candle.
- Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.
Remember, safety in the kitchen is important, especially on Thanksgiving Day when there is a lot of activity and people at home. Stay safe this holiday season!
Portland Fire & Rescue