Fire Marshal: Safety Tips For Cooking Turkeys

Hopatcong Chief Fire Marshal Richard Cook lists out some safety tips for those who chose to deep fry their turkeys.

Hopatcong Chief Fire Marshal Richard Cook listed out several safety tips he urges residents to follow if they choose to deep fry their turkey this thanksgiving:

  • Turkey fryers should always be used outdoors and at a safe distance from buildings and any other material that can burn
  • Never use turkey fryers on wooden decks or in garages.
  • Make sure the fryers are used on a flat surface to reduce accidental tipping.
  • Never leave the fryer unattended. Most units do not have thermostat controls.
  • If you don't control the temperature, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.
  • Never let children or pets near the fryer during or after use. The oil inside the cooking pot can remain dangerously hot long after it has been turned off.
  • To avoid oil spillover, do not overfill the fryer.
  • Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching pot or lid handles.
  • Safety goggles will protect your eyes from oil splatter.
  • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed. The National Turkey Federation recommends refrigerator thawing and to allow approximately 24 hours for every five pounds of bird thawed in the refrigerator.
  • Be careful with marinades. Oil and water don't mix and water causes oil to spill over potentially causing a fire or even an explosion.
  • Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby. Never use water to extinguish a grease fire. Remember to use your best judgment when attempting to fight a fire. If the fire is manageable, use an all-purpose fire extinguisher. If the fire increases, immediately call 9-1-1 for help.
  • Do not move turkey fryer during operation or while oil is hot.
  • Let oil cool completely before removing it from fryer.

Remember, oil and water don’t mix! Be sure the bird is fully thawed and dry, dry dry, and don’t fry in the rain or snow. Never bring the fryer inside. That’s a recipe for disaster!


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