Thanksgiving fire safety

Fire Safety Over the Thanksgiving Holiday

Tips that Go Beyond the Kitchen

Thanksgiving is a delicious time of year in which we give special attention to the many things that we are thankful for. It’s also a time in which we must be extra vigilant about fire risks and safety so that those people and things that we love are protected. Fortunately, there are steps that you can take to ensure that your home is safe during this chaotic and joyful time without adding too much to an already very long to-do list. These are also measures that can protect you, your family, and your home year round.

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But First, A Look at Some Numbers

Before we get into the tips, it’s good to get a solid understanding of why you need to make extra sure that you prevent a Thanksgiving fire, which will help you prevent a fire at any time. The U.S. Fire Administration published a report on Thanksgiving fires in residential buildings from 2014 to 2016 and this is what they found:

  1. For every year (2014, 2015, and 2016), there were approximately 2,400 residential fires reported to U.S. fire departments on Thanksgiving day, which caused $19 million in property loss in addition to the 25 injuries and 5 deaths.
  1. There are 1.8 Thanksgiving Day fires per 1,000 fires compare to 5.8 non-Thanksgiving Day fires per 1,000 fires.
  1. There are 11 injuries per 1,000 Thanksgiving fires compared to 25.7 injuries per 1,000 non-Thanksgiving fires.
  1. $7,800 is the average loss per fire compared to $17,560 for non-Thanksgiving Day fires.
  1. Multifamily dwellings account for 32.1% of Thanksgiving Day fires. One- and two-family dwellings account for 62.6% of Thanksgiving Day fires, while the remaining 5.3% is reserved for other types of homes.
  1. Thanksgiving fire alarm numbers begin to increase at 7:00 a.m. and peak from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  1. 77% of Thanksgiving fires are limited to the object of origin, which means it is contained where it begins. However, this doesn’t minimize the extent of injury.
  1. Cooking is responsible for 76.5% of Thanksgiving fires.

You can see here that the pattern of Thanksgiving fires is different from a random fire that happens any other time of the year. Knowing the profile of what makes a Thanksgiving fire different can help you with prevention. Just don’t let the fact that there are fewer deaths or injuries per 1,000 fires get your guard down because Thanksgiving is one day a year and nearly 3,000 fires on one day is a lot.

Fire Safety Tips to Keep You Safe on Thanksgiving

Now it’s time for some quick tips. For instance, HAVE A WORKING SMOKE ALARM. This is key in fire containment and overall safety. Security alarms have built-in smoke detectors that can detect smoke or fire anywhere in the house all year round.

Second, make sure you have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen close to the stove and oven. Before you start cooking, make sure your fire extinguisher is safe to use.

Third, don’t cook with long, loose sleeves since loose clothing can catch fire.

Some other tips:

  • Don’t leave cooking food unattended. Yes, it is tempting to make that quick trip to the grocery store, but either have another adult watch the kitchen or send them on an errand.
  • Kids and the cooking of a huge meal aren’t compatible. It’s best that the little ones stay away from all of the sharp objects and hot things.
  • Face pot and pan handles toward the back of the stove so they aren’t over any burners. Be mindful of towel placement so they don’t touch a burner and catch fire.

If a fire occurs, your 24/7 monitored security system can alert the authorities. Don’t yet have a system? Call 911 immediately. If the fire is a grease or oil fire, don’t throw the contents outside. Instead, place a lid over the flames to snuff them out and turn off the heat. The lid shouldn’t be removed until the pan cools. You can also put out an oven fire by keeping the door closed and turning off the heat so it smothers. Opening the door simply gives the fire oxygen to thrive.

Baking soda is also another good thing to have to put out a food fire. You don’t want to use flour or water because the reaction could be a violent one that causes the fire to spread.

Contact An Expert Rochester Fire Alarm Company

By keeping the above fire safety tips in mind, you should have a much safer Thanksgiving. If you don’t have an alarm system that can detect smoke or fire anywhere in your home, SPS Fire & Security has some great options that will help you protect your family and your home. Call us for more information at 585-770-0348.


Happy Thanksgiving!

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