TOPEKA (KSNT) — Thanksgiving is this week, which means a lot of people will be busy preparing in the kitchen. The Topeka Fire Department is urging people to use caution while cooking.
“If you’re cooking or frying on that stovetop, make sure you have a lid handy on the countertops so if it does catch on fire, you can quickly cover that up with a lid,” Alan Stahl, the Public Education Officer with the Topeka Fire Department, said.
Thanksgiving is the day fire officials in Topeka see the most amount of house fires throughout the year, so there are a few things people should do before grabbing the oven mitts.
- Make sure the oven is empty before turning it on. It sounds like common sense, but it is easy to forget.
- Have a three foot radius around the stovetop. This will help prevent children from getting burned.
- Set a timer and never leave the kitchen unattended while cooking.
- Turn pot handles inward over the stove.
- Set a timer for each dish. With all the chaos, this will help remind people when the food is finished cooking.
- Keep paper towels and napkins away from hot surfaces.
- Have a fire extinguisher handy.
For those frying a turkey, there are certain parts of the house to avoid while cooking.
“If you’re using a turkey fryer, use it outside on your driveway,” Stahl said. “Don’t use it on the deck, don’t use it next to the house and for goodness sakes, don’t use it in the garage.”
If people have questions they can reach the Topeka Fire Department at 785-368-4000. For emergencies, always dial 9-1-1.