Tips for Thanksgiving safety

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Kristan Campbell
  • 432nd Wing/432nd Air Expeditionary Wing, Public Affairs

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, many will travel home to visit their loved ones. Others work tirelessly to prepare a holiday dinner, and some will spend their holidays defending freedom in distant lands. No matter how you are spending your holidays, here are a few helpful tips in order to maintain a safe and happy household this season.

Holiday safety tips

-Check all smoke alarms prior to preparing the meal. If the residence or building doesn’t have them, a smoke alarm should be installed in every room.

-Check the expiration dates on all packaged goods when shopping for a holiday dinner. This will help prevent sickness or food poisoning. Storing food properly will also help ensure freshness when it is time to get cooking!

-Avoid wearing loose clothing while cooking. Untucked or slacked articles of clothing could catch on kitchen items – or, worse yet – catch on fire.

-Don’t leave cooking food unattended. No matter if it is baking, grilling, frying or broiling, stay in the kitchen or turn off the stove. Check roasting and baking food regularly to ensure kitchen safety.

-Exercise caution when cooking moist items with oil. When it is heated, oil has a tendency to pop. If using a fryer, deep fryer, or other mediums that involve oil, ensure all food is completely thawed and carefully placed.

-Keep flammable items away from the kitchen. Pot holders, oven mitts, and wooden utensils are some of the most common items that start fires when left too close to heated surfaces. As a reminder that the oven or stove is in use, use a timer while in the kitchen.

-Keep small children and pets out of the cooking area. Children helping to prepare Thanksgiving food should be supervised.

-Regularly clean cooking surfaces to prevent grease buildup. Grease fires are one of the most difficult types of fires to extinguish, so preventing grease fires starts with keeping the kitchen grease free.

-Ensure a fire extinguisher is on hand when working with any heated appliances. For training and information on the proper use of fire extinguishers, contact the local fire department.

-Thoroughly cook all meat and raw ingredients prior to consumption. Cooking food thoroughly will kill bacteria and foodborne pathogens that cause illness.

-Always check the kitchen before leaving the area to make sure all appliances have been turned off.

-When traveling out of the area, exercise common sense to safeguard the home. Don’t post travel plans on social media, never leave an extra key hidden outside, and be sure to have all mail, newspapers, and other deliveries picked up by a neighbor, friend or relative. This will make homes a harder and less conspicuous target for burglars.

Use these safety tips to have a happy, safe holiday! For more information on how to stay safe this holiday season, visit or