Fire mar­shal of­fers safety tips for hol­i­day cook­ing

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By BRI­ANNA SHEA

bshea@ce­cil­whig.com

— County res­i­dents are cau­tioned to take steps to stay safe while cook­ing their Thanks­giv­ing din­ner this year.

Twenty kitchen-re­lated fires were re­ported on Thanks­giv­ing in the state last year, said Se­nior Deputy Bruce Bouch, spokesper­son for the Of­fice of the Mary­land State Fire Mar­shal.

CE­CIL COUNTY

That was three more than were re­ported in the state for 2014.

In or­der to pre­vent fire in­ci­dents, the Mary­land State Fire Mar­shal’s Of­fice of­fered the fol­low­ing safety tips for fam­i­lies who are us­ing a va­ri­ety of ways to pre­pare their hol­i­day meal.

are work­ing prop­erly by test­ing them. Also, make sure guests know where ex­its are in case of a fire and have them meet at a des­ig­nated lo­ca­tion out­side.

fires in the kitchen is unat­tended cook­ing. Stay in the kitchen when cook­ing on the stove­top to watch the food.

& Pets Free Zone,” around any area where hot foods or drinks are pre­pared.

the stove and coun­ter­top to avoid spills. cook­ing to smother small grease fires. To put out the fire, slide the lid over the pan and turn the burner off and leave the pan cov­ered un­til it has cooled.

such as oven mitts, wooden uten­sils, food pack­ag­ing and tow­els away from the stove­top.

kitchen. Make sure the work area is clean, which al­lows for bet­ter ef­fi­ciency and a de­crease in chances for mishaps.

out of the reach of chil­dren.

unat­tended or in places where there is a chance they can be knocked over by chil­dren or pets.

zone around any portable zone free of com­bustible ma­te­ri­als and block chil­dren and pets from get­ting too close.

Turkey fryer safety tips in­clude:

can be eas­ily tipped over, which al­lows for hot oil spillage. Place the ap­pli­ances on a hard, level and non-com­bustible out­door sur­face.

fryer un­der an over­hang or tem­po­rary roof be­cause a flare can ig­nite ma­te­ri­als above the ap­pli­ance.

thor­oughly thawed be­fore cook­ing be­cause par­tially frozen turkeys can cause a spillage and cause a flareup.

plac­ing the turkey in the con­tainer. Re-ig­nite the burner af­ter you are sure it is safe to do so.

tem­per­a­ture of the oil. It can eas­ily reach tem­per­a­tures to the point of com­bus­tion.

the fryer. Fol­low man­u­fac­turer’s guide­lines for proper fill­ing lev­els.

get dan­ger­ously hot. Use well in­su­lated pothold­ers or oven mitts.

unat­tended while cook­ing.

on hand. Do not use water in an at­tempt to ex­tin­guish a grease fire.

please en­sure to close the doors on your way out,”

open al­lows oxy­gen to feed the fire al­low­ing it to grow.”

He also sug­gested that fam­ily mem­bers invite their fam­ily and guests to dis­cuss their good and bad ex­pe­ri­ences while cook­ing din­ner, so that peo­ple can learn from each other, dur­ing the hol­i­day meal.

PHO­TOS COUR­TESY OF THE OSFM

If com­bustible items such as this rag are left unat­tended and near the stove­top, it could re­sult in a fire.

A turkey fryer is ca­pa­ble of start­ing a fire and users are ad­vised to ex­er­cise cau­tion.

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