Turkey fryer mishaps can cause serious burns
(HealthDay)— Celebration can quickly turn to tragedy if popular turkey fryers are misused on Thanksgiving Day, experts say.
Over the last decade, more than 141 serious fires and hot-oil burns have occurred while people were using turkey fryers, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
"I have actually cared for a patient who tried to deep fry the turkey indoors, which absolutely should not be done in any circumstances," Dr. Arthur Sanford, a burn surgeon at Loyola University Health System, said in a university news release.
"And I cannot stress enough that the turkey must be moisture-free. A frozen turkey in hot oil is a recipe for tragedy," he added.
Sanford offered a number of other safety tips for people using turkey fryers:
- Purchase a newer fryer that has a sealed lid to prevent oil spills.
- Place the fryer in an open area away from all walls, fences or other structures. Never use the fryer in, on or under a garage, carport, porch, deck or any other structure that can catch fire. Keep the fryer in full view while the burner is on and keep children and pets away from the cooking area.
- Do not cook in short sleeves, shorts or bare feet. Cover all bare skin when dunking or removing the turkey. Wear goggles or glasses to protect your eyes.
- Make sure the turkey is fully thawed and dry when placed in the hot oil. Water can cause the oil to spill over, triggering a fire or explosion. Be careful with marinades.
- Don't overfill the fryer with oil. Slowly raise and lower the turkey to reduce hot-oil splatters and to prevent burns. Turn off the fryer immediately if the oil starts to overheat.
- If the turkey fryer catches fire, do not use water to try to douse it. Have a fire extinguisher appropriate for oil fires with you when using a turkey fryer and familiarize yourself with the extinguisher beforehand.
- If you or someone else suffers a burn, get immediate medical aid.
- Don't drink alcohol before or while using a turkey fryer. Wait until dinner to have a drink.
More information: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers tips for the safe preparation of your holiday meal.
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