Thanksgiving is leading day for home cooking fires

RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Thanksgiving is just a few days away and while it is known for time with family and good food, it is also the most common time for cooking fires.

According to the latest report from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Thanksgiving is the leading day for home cooking fires. NFPA states that nearly four times as many home cooking fires occur on Thanksgiving day.

Unattended fires are a significant factor. People are busy cooking multiple dishes and entertaining guests at the same time, so it is easy to get distracted.

Based on the NFPA's latest report: "Between 2011 and 2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an annual average of 170,200 home structure fires involving cooking equipment, which resulted in 510 civilian fire deaths, 5,470 civilian fire injuries, and $1.2 billion in direct property damage. Unattended cooking was, by far, the leading contributing factor in these fires and fire fatalities."

Frying turkeys on Thanksgiving has gotten more popular throughout the years. However, the NFPA discourages the use of turkey fryers because they can be very dangerous.

"First, do not do it on a wooden deck; do it outside on a concrete base," said Reno Fire Department Battalion Chief John McNamara. "Second, make sure your turkey is thawed out completely. Once that oil gets up to temperature and you drop a frozen turkey into that vat of hot oil, it is going to pretty much explode and send hot oil everywhere and hurt you and your family. It can also splash out, catch on fire and burn your house down."

For information on how to safe when cooking for Thanksgiving, click here.