Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Current News FWFD provides Turkey Fryer Cooking Safety Information

FWFD provides Turkey Fryer Cooking Safety Information

With the Thanksgiving holiday just a few days away, the Fort Wayne Fire Department shares this important safety information from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. (UL) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) for those planning on using a Turkey Fryer.

First and foremost, please be aware that the use of turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns, other injuries and the destruction of property.  NFPA discourages the use of outdoor gas-fueled turkey fryers that immerse the turkey in hot oil.   These turkey fryers use a substantial quantity of cooking oil at high temperatures, and units currently available for home use pose a significant danger that hot oil will be released at some point during the cooking process.  NFPA urges those who prefer fried turkey to seek out professional establishments, such as grocery stores, specialty food retailers, and restaurants for the preparation of the dish, or consider a new type of "oiless" turkey fryer.  UL says the increasing number of fires related to turkey fryers is a risk that outweighs the benefits of the appliance and due to multiple concerns has not certified any turkey fryer with UL Mark.

The CPSC says the majority of reported turkey fryer incidents occur while the oil is being heated.  For those planning to use this device anyway, the CPSC and UL offer the following advice:

  • Only use turkey fryers outdoors; away from any building or material that can catch fire; in full view
  • Make sure there is at least two feet of space between the liquid propane tank and the fryer burner
  • Keep children and pets well away from the fryer when in use and for several hours after cooking
  • Never place the fryer in a garage, on wooden decks or under a carport or breezeway
  • Never leave the fryer unattended; monitor the temperature closely
  • If any smoke at all comes from the heating pot of oil, turn the burner off immediately - this means the oil is overheated
  • Cover bare skin and use pot holders
  • Follow the manufacturer's recommendation for the amount of oil to add; do not overfill the fryer
  • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed and dried before adding to the oil; water and ice crystals can cause the oil to splatter or spill over

In case of fire, do not use water to try and extinguish.  Never attempt to use water to extinguish a grease fire.  Call 9-1-1 immediately.  While waiting for the fire department to arrive, an all-purpose fire extinguisher can be used if you have one ready and know how to use it.