With Thanksgiving around the corner, your home is probably filling up with guests and your refrigerator is probably filling up with ingredients for your big meal. Thanksgiving is a very social time, but that also makes it a hectic time. Between getting family members settled into the spare room and preparing veggies for the casserole, there is a lot going on that can take your attention away from a few hazards this holiday brings. From deep-fried turkeys to donation solicitors, here are Thanksgiving hazards you should prepare for.
Unattended ovens, stovetops and more
Between the vegetables you’re making in the crockpot, the stew and hot rum punch you’re boiling on the stovetop and the turkey you’re roasting in the oven, you have a lot of hot appliances running. Each one requires a different cooking time, and though you’re doing your best to set timers and check on things accordingly, you never know when a chatty relative will steal your attention. Make sure your smoke detectors are working properly, just in case you forget to take that stuffing out of the oven in time. You may be able to use your home automated system to schedule some appliances, too, and ensure they turn off when they’re supposed to.
Deep-frying a turkey
Deep-fried turkeys are admittedly delicious, but they also call for around three gallons of highly flammable oil and a can of propane. Those are two rather frightening things to have in your home at the same time. Make sure you properly thaw your turkey before putting it in the deep fryer, because a partially frozen turkey can cause oil to splatter when put into the pot. You should also push your fryer to the back part of your stove and keep children and pets away from it. If your fryer tips over, that could mean gallons of dangerously hot oil spills everywhere. Follow instructions diligently because even the tiniest amount of oil touching the burner, or failure to check the thermometer regularly, could mean a devastating fire.
The holiday season is a time of giving, which is why you see a lot of individuals from the Red Cross, the Salvation Army and other nonprofit organizations circling neighborhoods. Do not open your door for anyone who isn’t dawning some sort of logo or uniform that confirms their legitimacy. Some burglars count on homeowner’s giving spirit during this time of year, knowing you’ll gladly open the door, answer questions and open your pockets. But some donation solicitors may not be legitimate and may just be robbers casing your property for later.
Keep children and pets out of the kitchen
It’s imperative you keep small kids and pets out of the kitchen when cooking the Thanksgiving meal. Ideally, some adult should be supervising the kitchen at all times. But just in case, make sure to activate the motion sensor alarms around your kitchen, so you’ll be notified if a curious child sneaks in there while you’re in the bathroom.
Cook your meal slowly
If possible, spread out your cooking over several days. You want to avoid a situation in which you have the active power cords of a tea kettle, crock pot, hot plate, microwave and toaster all going at once. This can not only cause a power outage, but also pose a fire hazard. If you can, prepare a few smaller items in the days leading up to Thanksgiving and re-heat them when it’s time to eat.
Clear your kitchen floor
Make sure your kitchen floor is dry and doesn’t have any clutter like children’s toys, school bags or other miscellaneous items. You’ll be rushing around in the kitchen, testing the turkey’s readiness and stirring the hot chocolate. You don’t want to trip on something and potentially knock over a pot of hot oil.
If you follow these tips you should have a safe and festive Thanksgiving!