Thanksgiving Safety Tips
Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and families all over the country are getting ready for the holiday. Whether you are staying home and cooking a big meal or hitting the road to visit family, you need to be aware of certain dangers. By following certain safety tips, you can ensure the safety of yourself and your family this Thanksgiving holiday.
Thanksgiving Driving Safety Tips
Thanksgiving and the days surrounding it are some of the busiest of the year for road travel. AAA estimates that nearly 50 million people travel the roadways over Thanksgiving. If you are planning on getting behind the wheel this holiday, please remember the following to prevent a car collision:
- Ensure your vehicle is properly maintained. Get the oil changed and fix any mechanical issues before traveling long distances. This includes the brakes, engine, windshield wipers, turn signals, lights, fluids, and more.
- Plan your route. If you are taking a longer trip, make sure you know the exact route you are taking.
- Do not drive distracted. Most people know not to text and drive, but looking at a phone’s GPS can be just as dangerous. If you are the victim in a distracted driving collision, speak with a distracted driving accident lawyer to explore your legal options.
- Have a designated driver. If you will be consuming alcohol, make sure you have a designated driver to take you to and from your location. If you need to, call a cab or a ride-share service to pick you up.
- Be ready for winter weather. Always prepare for traveling on winter roads, especially if you will be driving in an area prone to snow and ice.
Fire Safety Awareness for Thanksgiving
The National Fire Protection Association says that Thanksgiving is one of the most hazardous holidays when it comes to fires, particularly concerning cooking. During the latest reporting year of data, we know that there were more than 1,600 home cooking fires reported on Thanksgiving Day. The leading factor for these fires was unattended cooking, and two-thirds of all home cooking fires started when the food or other cooking materials caught fire. If you are doing the cooking on Thanksgiving, you need to ensure that:
- Someone stays in the kitchen anytime there is food in the oven. Never leave the house when a turkey is cooking, despite how long it will take for it to finish.
- Keep all matches and lighters away from children.
- Make sure all children are kept away from any hot surfaces and plates.
- Keep the floor clear of all obstacles to prevent a serious slip and fall accident.
- If you are frying a turkey, keep the fryer away from anything combustible, including trees, dry brush, wooden decks, etc.
- Do not overfill the fryer with grease, or it could splash out and cause a fire.
- Always thaw a turkey completely before putting it in the fryer.
Thanksgiving is also a popular time for candles and fires, whether in the fireplace or outside. Practice fall fire safety at all times. Have a way to put the fire out if it spreads outdoors, and be aware of any “burn bans” in place in your area.
Additional Cooking Safety
There will be plenty of food on Thanksgiving, but you need to ensure you cook everything to the proper temperature. The USDA recommends that turkeys be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent foodborne illnesses.
Children also need to be kept away from anything hot, including beverages, hot vegetables, gravy, and more. Always keep knives out of the reach of children.