Avoid a Thanksgiving disaster, follow cooking fire safety tips

Making Thanksgiving meals or dishes usually involves a lot of time in the kitchen and using the stove and oven. According to the Minnesota State Fire Marshal, the most cooking fires of the year occur on this single day.

The marshal has some other tips to help people have a safe holiday and avoid a cooking fire:

  • Stay in the kitchen while cooking any dish.
  • Turn off the stove and move the pan away from the burner anytime you leave the kitchen.
  • Keep easily flammable kitchen items, such as oven mitts, towels, and wooden spoons, away from the stove.
  • Be cautious of the clothing you wear while cooking. Avoid loose-fitting apparel that could catch fire more easily.
  • If a fire starts in a pan on the stove, put a tight-fitting lid on the dish and turn off the heat.

A cooking fire can cost a lot of money. The fire marshal says that on average, each year for the last five years, cooking fires caused $4.5 million in damages.

The fire marshal says that unattended equipment and flammable items too close to the heat were the top two causes of cooking fires last year, and cooking fires are the leading cause of structure fires.