Thanksgiving safety tips

Tomorrow is one of our favorite holidays, Thanksgiving!  What a wonderful day to visit with friends and family, cook delicious food and enjoy some time to relax.  Ensure that your family will have a lovely and safe holiday with these tips!

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According to the NFPA, cooking fires (already the leading cause of home fire in the US) will triple the average on Thanksgiving Day.  Protect your home from these potential fire hazards:

Fire safety

Always be in the kitchen when cooking stovetop.  It is easy to get distracted on such a busy day, but always keep an eye on what’s going on while cooking.  Never leave the house while cooking your turkey.  Check on your bird frequently to check temperature and to make sure nothing is dripping in the stove.

Keep children a safe distance (at least 3 feet) from the stove and cooking instruments at all times.  Take care to make sure they do not carry or come into contact with hot liquids like gravy or hot oil.

Wear short sleeves while cooking or roll your sleeves securely into place.  Lose clothing can easily drag through hot food or a heat source causing burns or a fire.

Make sure your smoke alarms and fire extinguishers are in working order.  You want them to be ready should you ever need them!

If you are planning on frying your turkey this year (a common cause of fire damage) make sure your bird is thawed before adding it to the hot oil.  Check that you have the correct amount of oil in the pot so when the turkey is added it will not overflow.

Many families travel for the holidays which can leave homes vulnerable to break ins.

Travel safety –

Don’t post travel plans on social networks; not everyone needs to know that your home is going to be vacant for days at a time!

Have a kindly neighbor stop by the home to pick up the paper and mail and do a general sweep of your property to make sure nothing looks out of place.

Make sure to properly secure your home before leaving, checking all doors and window for properly locking mechanisms.  Remember to arm your alarm before leaving.

Nothing will put a damper on the holiday quite like a food borne illness; cook with caution!

Food handling –

Take care while thawing your turkey that it doesn’t drip on or contaminate other fresh foods.  Turkey can contain harmful bacteria that can make you very sick!

Keep your kitchen clean while cooking.  Utensils that come into contact with a raw bird should not be used on any other foods until they have been thoroughly sanitized.  Be aware of using porous materials, like wooden cutting boards and take extra care to clean them.

165 is the magic number when it comes to cooking turkey; this is the temperature at which harmful pathogens are destroyed.  If the temperature within the turkey is any less this, it can be dangerous to eat.  Make sure to test the temperature in a dense area like the breast.

When you’re done eating, don’t let your leftovers sit out for too long.  Package them up for turkey sandwiches, turkey stew, turkey casserole and turkey everything for days to come!

Happy holidays from all of us here at Kennedy Restoration!