Safety Tips to Avoid Deep-Fried Turkey Disasters

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 – With the Thanksgiving holiday right around the corner, Allstate Insurance is talking turkey. Deep frying a turkey can be a hazardous endeavor, and Allstate wants consumers to be sure that they focus on safety.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were more than 100 reported fire incidents involving turkey fryers since 1999. The majority of these incidents involved fires caused by the oil igniting and burns from splashing oil.

“Over the past several years, more and more people are looking to celebrate the holiday with a deep-friend turkey. At Allstate, we’re in the business of protecting people and their possessions. We want to help ensure that the holiday is a time for giving thanks, and not for experiencing regret,” says Allstate Field Vice President Dave Prendergast.

Underwriters Laboratory offers the following tips for safer turkey fryer use:

• Turkey fryers should always be used outdoors a safe distance from buildings and any other material that can burn.

 • Never use turkey fryers on wooden decks or in garages.

• Make sure the fryers are used on a flat surface to reduce accidental tipping.

 • Never leave the fryer unattended. Most units do not have thermostat controls. If you don’t watch the fryer carefully, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.

• Never let children or pets near the fryer when in use. Even after use, never allow children or pets near the turkey fryer. The oil inside the cooking pot can remain dangerously hot, hours after use.

• To avoid oil spillover, do not overfill the fryer.

• Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching pot or lid handles. If possible, wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from oil splatter.

• Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and be careful with marinades. Oil and water don’t mix, and water causes oil to spill over, causing a fire or even an explosion hazard.

• The National Turkey Federation recommends refrigerator thawing and to allow approximately 24 hours for every five pounds of bird thawed in the refrigerator.

• Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby. Never use water to extinguish a grease fire. Remember to use your best judgment when attempting to fight a fire. If the fire is manageable, use an all-purpose fire extinguisher. If the fire increases, immediately call 9-1-1 for help.

• Even after use, never allow children or pets near the turkey fryer. The oil inside the cooking pots remains dangerously hot, hours after use.

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