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Editorial: Tips to safely enjoy Thanksgiving this year and every year

As the Thanksgiving holiday comes around and most students will return home to friends and family, we know students are looking forward to a homemade feast. We at The Scout want to remind everyone to stay safe.

Get a designated driver

According to the National Safety Council, over 40,000 people are seriously injured in car accidents every year during the Thanksgiving holiday, and over one-third of those fatalities are alcohol-related. If you participate in Blackout Wednesday, be safe about it. Make arrangements for a designated driver or a ride service.

In the kitchen

Even though holiday host houses can quickly become hectic, be sure to keep a close eye on the kitchen — especially when heat sources like stoves and ovens are in use. If needed, designate a few people to be in the kitchen at all times or take shifts.

Have all necessary cooking utensils at the ready instead of scrambling for the right tool at the last minute. It could help avoid mishaps such as burning skin, dropping food or charring the ham.

Read the directions

If you decide to help out with the food prep this year, be sure to know what you’re doing first. Taking a few minutes to prepare can prevent a disaster.

Deep fry your turkey outside

While mixing up the tried-and-true turkey by deep frying it has become a recent trend, causing a house fire should be avoided. Even in a garage, one wrong move with a large container of oil can be a serious hazard.

If you insist on frying the bird, measure how much oil you’ll need first with water. With a pot off of the heat, dip your turkey in the water to make sure any fluids you cook with don’t overflow.

Remember, when you’re ready to fry, dip the bird slowly and avoid dropping it in the deep fryer all at once. If you throw it in, you risk boiling oil damaging your property and burning yourself from the splash.

If a saucepan catches on fire, put the lid on and turn off the stove

According to the National Fire Protection Association, Thanksgiving has the most kitchen fires at three times the daily average, followed by Christmas Day and Christmas Eve.

To put out grease fires, certain fire suppressants like water or flour won’t do the trick. In fact, water and flour can actually worsen the situation by spreading the fire. The best thing to do in this situation is to turn off the stove and cover the fire, removing heat and oxygen.

The Scout wishes everyone a safe and happy Thanksgiving break before returning for the final stretch of the fall semester.

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The Scout is published by members of the student body of Bradley University. Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the University.