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The Daily Ardmoreite
  • Deep-frying a turkey can be a delicious Thanksgiving treat — or a deadly disaster

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  • In recent years, frying the turkey has become a mainstay of the Thanksgiving feast.
    But with delicious fried bird comes great responsibility. One misstep along the way, and the next thing you know, firefighters are on the scene limiting property damage.
    In 2012, no incidents were reported in Ardmore. And as far as Ardmore Fire Chief Cary Williamson is concerned, he would rather see it as a trend than an aberration.
    "It's a big issue," he says. "It's not uncommon for us to be called out for someone that had a misstep with a turkey fryer. Last year, we had mostly medical calls, but turkey frying is still kind of a new thing. There has been a lot of trial and error."
    Williamson credited safety campaigns for bringing awareness to the issue and making the public aware of the dangers associated with frying a turkey.
    "A lot of times, people will overfill the pot with oils, and when they lower the turkey, it overfills and ignites," Williamson explains.
    To help make the public aware of the proper safety steps needed to ensure a safe Thanksgiving, Williamson offers some safety tips.
    • Fryers should be outdoors, on a level surface at a safe distance from structures.
    • Never use a fryer on an open deck, under a patio cover, in a garage or enclosed space.
    • Do not overfill a fryer.
    • Never leave the fryer unattended.
    • Never let children or pets near the fryer when in use or after use, as the oil can remain hot for hours.
    • Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts and wear long-sleeved garmets and safety goggles to protect from splatter.
    • Make sure the turkey is completely thawed.
    • Keep a fire extinguisher nearby.
    • If a fire occurs, call 911.

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