Whether you''re heading over the river and through the woods to grandma''s house this year, or hosting friends and family at your house, Underwriters Laboratories Inc. (UL) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) remind you that holiday festivities can pose certain safety risks.
According to NFPA, cooking has been the leading cause of home fires since 1990.
UL and the NFPA offer these fire safety tips to follow while cooking during the holidays or at any time of the year:
- Turn off and unplug all appliances when not in use. Periodically check on food being cooked in an oven, microwave or on the stove.
- Use caution when using electrical appliances. Never plug more than one high wattage appliance into a single outlet. Never stand in or near water when using electrical appliances.
- Keep young children at least 3 feet away from kitchen appliances when cooking.
- Dress appropriately for cooking. Wear short or tight-fitting sleeves and use caution when working near heat sources.
- Have plenty of fire-resistant potholders and oven mitts ready for use while cooking.
- Turn handles inward so pots and pans won''t be pulled or knocked off the stove.
- Save operating instructions for rarely used appliances and reread them before each use.
by Virginia Sutcliffe