Officials say fire is common occurrence when precautions aren’t taken
While a tasty alternative to the traditional roasted main course, deep-frying a turkey without taking precautions can lead to fire and serious injury. The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) reports that nearly 4,300 fires occur on Thanksgiving, causing 15 deaths and almost $27 million in property damage, many of them due to deep-frying accidents.
Here are some safety recommendations:
- Read owner’s manual for proper set up.
- Completely thaw the bird before frying (hot oil and water do not mix).
- Use the correct amount of oil. If overfilled, the oil may spill out of the pot and hit the burner, causing the unit to ignite.
- Never leave the fryer unattended. Many don’t have thermostat controls to prevent overheating of the oil to the point it ignites.
- Keep children and pets away from the fryer.
- Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby. Never use water to extinguish an oil fire.
- Lid and handles of the cooking pot get dangerously hot, posing severe burn hazards.
- Do not deep-fry your turkey inside your garage, on your porch, or inside your home.
- Use your fryer outside, away from trees, walls, fences and other structures.
Although homeowner policies will cover things like the structure of a home, personal belongings, and liability protection against bodily injury to guests, it is best to do what you can to avoid needing that protection.