Thanksgiving Safety Tips For Home and the Road

Thanksgiving personal injuryHolidays are just around the corner and they’re certainly no stranger to personal injury cases. According to State Farm, there are more cooking-related fires on Thanksgiving Day than on any other day of the year. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that turkey deep fryers account for more than 1,000 home fires during the holiday and that these fires produce more than $15 million in property damage in addition to the severe burns and injuries they cause.

Meanwhile, Thanksgiving is one of the deadliest travel days of the year. It’s estimated that 90 percent of Thanksgiving travelers will drive to their destinations on Thanksgiving, according to AAA, which translates to about 39.1 million people on the roads. In 2010, one of the deadliest years on record, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that 431 people died on the roads nationwide.

In order to help your family enjoy a safe and injury-free holiday, I’ve prepared some Thanksgiving holiday safety tips.

How to Safely Fry Your Thanksgiving Turkey

  • Don’t wear loose clothing when cooking.
  • Keep cooking surfaces clean and free from grease.
  • Keep all flammable items, including oven mitts, kitchen towels, and pot holders away from the stove top.
  • Have a fire extinguisher (that’s rated for grease fires) nearby when frying a turkey (never use water to extinguish a grease fire!).
  • Make sure all of your home’s smoke detectors have fresh batteries and are working properly.
  • Place the fryer a safe distance from any structures outside your home and never use a turkey fryer indoors.
  • Fill the fryer to the recommended level and then lower the thawed turkey into the cold oil to ensure that you have enough oil (or too much oil).
  • Keep children and pets away from the fryer at all times, even after the turkey is done cooking.
  • Wear safety goggles and insulated oven mitts when touching the lid or pot handles.
  • Turn off the fuel source before you lower the thawed turkey into the hot oil.
  • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed before you lower it into the hot oil (The National Turkey Federation recommends refrigerator thawing and to allow approximately 24 hours for every five pounds of bird thawed).
  • Do not marinade the turkey prior to frying it.
  • Once the turkey is frying, make sure it is never left unattended.
  • Never add water or ice to the oil to try and cool it down once the turkey is done cooking.
  • If a fire develops and it can’t be controlled by the fire extinguisher, call 911 immediately.
  • Make sure the burners and ovens are turned off before sitting down to dinner.

How to Safely Drive to Your Thanksgiving Destination

  • Prepare a winter driving safety kit. It’ll give you peace of mind, believe me.
  • Perform preventative maintenance on your vehicle. Or you may want to schedule an appointment with your mechanic. Tire pressure, fluid levels, windshield wiper quality, and brakes should all be tested and replaced if necessary.
  • Pack snacks, drinks, and activities. Keep children occupied during long car trips to minimize distractions due to boredom and reduce travel time with less frequent stops.
  • Get a good night’s sleep. If you begin to feel tired, switch drivers or schedule an overnight stay to be safe. Don’t risk being a victim of drowsy driving!
  • Check the conditions. Research weather, traffic, and possible road construction that may occur during your trip. Follow my 12 Winter Weather Driving Safety Tips.
  • Use your seatbelt. Seatbelts saved more than 12,000 lives during the Thanksgiving holiday in 2011, according to the Department of Transportation. Keep your family safe by properly buckling up before starting the car.
  • Secure your pets. A pet that is not buckled or placed in a safety harness could become a dangerous projectile during an accident. Avoid injury to your loved ones by always securing your pets before a road trip.
  • Avoid distractions. Distracted driving is the number one cause of car accidents in America. Avoid texting, eating, and other activities while behind the wheel.
  • Don’t overload your vehicle. Your car has a specified weight limit. Check the load capacity on your car, which is typically printed on a label inside the driver’s side door, to be sure you aren’t overloading your vehicle with luggage and passengers.
  • Avoid late night driving which restricts visibility of road conditions.
  • Prepare for delays – too many accidents are the result of driver frustration.

And finally, to help ensure winter safety in your home, take heed of my winter weather safety tips to take care of your family through the holidays and into the new year!

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident in New Mexico through no fault of your own, be sure to contact the Atkinson Law Firm in Albuquerque for your free consultation!

Scott Atkinson (264 Posts)

Scott concentrates on serious personal injury cases. He believes that a catastrophic injury does not just affect the victim; it also dramatically impacts the victim’s family. Scott is in Albuquerque to fight for you to recover your New Mexico accident losses!