Thanksgiving is a time to gather with family and friends, give thanks, and enjoy a delicious feast. But before you start cooking the turkey and other festive dishes, take some time to review these safety tips. From deep frying your turkey to stocking a first-aid kit, a little extra precaution can ensure you and your family enjoy a safe Thanksgiving.
Fireplace Safety Tips
If you plan to enjoy the fireplace on Thanksgiving, make sure it’s ready for use. When building a fire, verify the flue is open to ensure deadly carbon monoxide doesn’t build up in your home. Use only dry, seasoned hardwood. Damp firewood creates excessive smoke and sparks. Build small fires rather than large ones. A big blaze can get out of control quickly. And finally, don’t burn wrapping paper or boxes in the fireplace; they can ignite and float up the chimney, starting a fire in the flue or on the roof.
First-Aid Kit Essentials
Having a first-aid kit on hand is always a good idea, but it’s vital when you have guests in your home during the holidays. To stock your first-aid kit, you’ll want bandages of various sizes, gauze pads, medical tape, scissors, antibiotic ointment, pain relievers, and tweezers. You may also want to include an EpiPen if anyone in your home has severe allergies.
Tips for Food Prep and a Safe Thanksgiving
Between cooking the turkey and all the side dishes, you’ll spend a lot of time around the stove this Thanksgiving. Follow these stovetop safety tips to avoid help prevent accidents.
- Keep anything that can catch fire – pot holders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper towels – away from the stove.
- Pay attention when you’re cooking. If you step away for even a minute, a pot could boil over, creating a mess or a fire.
- Always use a timer. It’s easy to lose track of time when you’re busy chatting with family and friends.
Deep Fried Turkey Safety Tips
Deep frying your turkey can be a delicious way to prepare the meal, but it’s necessary to take safety precautions.
- Fry the turkey outdoors, and make sure the fryer is at least 10 feet away from your house. You don’t want sparks setting fire to your home.
- Use a food thermometer to verify that the oil reaches the correct temperature before adding the turkey. And never leave the fryer unattended.
- Have an adult present the entire time it is cooking.
Food Poisoning Prevention Tips for a Safe Thanksgiving
Don’t end up sick after enjoying Thanksgiving dinner. To avoid food poisoning this holiday season, cook meats thoroughly and store foods safely.
- Use a meat thermometer to ensure they reach the correct internal temperature.
- Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold with chafing dishes or coolers filled with ice.
- Avoid cross-contamination by keeping raw meat away from other foods and using separate cutting boards and knives.
- Wash your hands often (especially after handling raw meat).
- Refrigerate leftovers within 2 hours of serving, or sooner if it’s hot outside.
Follow these tips and enjoy yourself. Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving.