Thanksgiving Day is almost here, and the Elmhurst Fire Department is issuing a warning to all residents who use turkey fryers.
U.S. fire departments respond to more than 1,000 fires each year involving serious burns or life threatening injuries associated with turkey fryers. The majority of these incidents occurred while the oil is being heated, prior to adding the turkey. For this reason, it is imperative that the temperature of the oil is closely monitored. If any smoke is coming from the heated oil, the burner should be turned off immediately. The Elmhurst Fire Department recommends that residents follow these safety tips if planning to use turkey fryers:
- Keep a grease-rated fire extinguisher close by.
- Always keep the fryer in full view when the burner is on.
- Place fryer in an open area away from all walls, fences, or other structures.
- Never use in, on, or under a garage, breezeway, carport, porch, or any structure that can catch fire.
- Raise and lower food slowly to reduce splatter and avoid burns.
- Cover bare skin when adding or removing food: goggles to shield your eyes, oven mitts to protect your hands and long sleeves to protect your arms.
- Check the oil temperature frequently.
- If oil begins to smoke, immediately turn gas supply off.
- If a fire occurs, immediately call 911. Do not attempt to extinguish fire with water— use a grease-rated fire extinguisher if available.
Please consider these safety tips during your holiday preparation this year. The National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) discourages the use of turkey fryers and urges those who prefer fried turkey to consider using a new type of “oil-less” turkey fryer.