VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - As we head into Thanksgiving and the holiday season, Valdosta Fire Department wants to remind you to stay safe as you cook and prepare the feast for the family.
“As we go into Christmas and Thanksgiving holidays, people are preparing meals so there are more activities and cooking going on so we definitely want to remind everyone to be safe, pay attention, and don’t leave it unattended,” said Chief Brian Boutwell.
Chief Boutwell says they are still seeing unattended cooking as a major cause for fires, locally and across the nation.
The most recent one occurring in Valdosta on Tuesday, that killed a cat.
As families gather and prepare meals, Chief Boutwell reminds everyone to not fry a frozen turkey, it can cause a big fire.
Also keep burners and fryers away from buildings, trees, and things that might catch fire.
Keep children and pets away from the cooking area, hot grease, stoves, and burners.
If you have guests over... don’t get distracted.
“Distractions can happen in the home especially while cooking and our cell phones are distractions. As we have guests over and of course we are trying to limit that this year and do social distance things and being aware of the pandemic. There are some people we haven’t seen in a while and they can also be a distraction. So we just want to remind everybody, if you are in the kitchen cooking to make sure we pay attention to it,” said Boutwell.
The city of Valdosta also shares the following tips:
- Make your cooking area safe. Move things that can burn away from the stove. Turn pot handles toward the back so that they can’t be bumped.
- Watch what you’re cooking. Use a timer when roasting a turkey or baking pies.
- Be prepared. Keep a large pan lid or baking sheet handy in case you need to smother a fire in a pan.
- Stay awake and alert while you’re cooking. If you see smoke or the grease starts to boil in your pan, turn the burner off.
- Prevent burns. Wear short sleeves when you cook, or roll them up. Don’t lean over the burner. Use potholders and oven mitts to handle hot cookware.