Red Cross offers tips for preventing Thanksgiving cooking fires

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – More cooking fires happen on Thanksgiving than any other day of the year, according to the Red Cross, and the organization is urging people to be careful in the kitchen.

Extra caution is especially necessary in South Carolina, where “cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires year after year,” according to Red Cross of SC CEO Rod Tolbert.

To prevent a turkey day tragedy, the Red Cross suggests the following tips for preventing kitchen fires:

  • Pay attention to what you’re cooking – Never leave unattended items in a fryer or on the stove. If you have to walk away, turn the fryer or stove off until you return.
  • Use a timer – Remind yourself to check oven and crockpot items that take longer to cook.
  • Turn pot handles towards the back of the stove – This prevents people from walking by and knocking them off of the stove.
  • Move flammable items away from the stove – Dishtowels, bags or boxes, printed recipes, curtains, etc. Kids and pets should also stay at least three feet away.
  • Avoid wearing loose clothing – Dangling sleeves, fringes, and frills can catch on fire.
  • Keep a pan lid or cookie sheet nearby – If a pan catches on fire, a lid can be used to safely put the fire out.
  • Turn the burner off if you see smoke – If a pan is smoking or grease starts to boil, turn the burner off and remove the pan from the heat.

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