TRAVERSE CITY —
Safety first on Thanksgiving
While most people consider overeating the greatest peril of Thanksgiving, cooking today's feast presents its own risks, too.
The National Fire Protection Association says Thanksgiving Day is the leading day for home cooking fires, with three times as many occurring on Thanksgiving as any other day of the year. In 2010, there were 1,370 fires on Thanksgiving, a 219 percent increase over the daily average.
NFPA recommends the following safety tips:
-- Always stay in the kitchen while frying, grilling or broiling food. If you have to leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove.
-- When simmering, baking, roasting or boiling food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
-- Stay alert. If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don't use the stove or stove top.
-- Keep anything that can catch fire such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains away from the stove top.
-- Keep a lid nearby when cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother a fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turning off the stove top. For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
If you have a cooking fire go out of control, just leave and call 9-1-1. If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear path out of the home, and that someone has called the fire department.