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Thanksgiving And Kitchen Injuries

Who knows what Thanksgiving will be like in 2020. With limited travel and many families staying at home, there may be fewer large gatherings to celebrate the holiday. No matter how many people are gathered for Thanksgiving, it may be a peak season for kitchen and cooking-related injuries. A number of accidents in late November are burn injuries, including: 

  • Young children unsupervised in the kitchen,
  • Deep-frying turkey accidents,
  • First-time and inexperienced cooking accidents, and
  • Improper reactions to fires.  

Scalding Liquid Injuries

Scalding liquid injuries commonly affect children. Young children may not be aware that a handle sticking out from the edge of the stovetop contains a boiling liquid. When kids are curious and reach out for the handle, they may accidentally tip hot soup or boiling water over their face and body. 

Scalding injuries and other contact burns are the primary cause of burn injuries to children age 5 and younger. Even the bathtub or kitchen tap turned on high may be hot enough to scald a child with 1 in 4 scald injuries caused by hot tap water. To reduce the risk of scald injuries to children, always supervise children in the kitchen. 

Deep-Fried Turkey Accidents

The internet is full of deep-fryer turkey accident videos. Each year, new and experienced turkey fryers have a group of family members gathered around the large pot of hot oil. Some of the common causes of turkey fryer accidents involve failing to properly thaw the turkey, over-filling the fryer, or making the wrong decision if the fryer catches fire. 

William Shatner and State Farm Insurance even put out an amusing video on the safe use of turkey fryers. According to the video, tips include: 

  1. Avoid oil spillover–don’t overfill the pot.
  2. Turn off flame when lowering the turkey into oil.
  3. Fry outside, away from the house.
  4. Properly thaw the turkey before frying.
  5. Keep a grease-fire-approved extinguisher nearby.

Be Careful Putting Out a Fire

The most common reaction to seeing a fire is to throw water on the flames. This may put out a campfire but can be dangerous in the kitchen. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), when grease or oil catches fire on the stovetop, adding water can create a fireball and splash scalding liquid across the kitchen, spreading the fire. 

Another mistake people make is to try and carry the pan outside, which could splash on the chef or others, making them drop the flaming pan of oil. When a pan catches fire, sliding a pan lid over the flames may smother the flame. Then turn off the heat and wait until the pan cools. 

After a Burn Injury 

Before Thanksgiving in your home, make sure your smoke detectors are working and keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen. If you have a fire extinguisher, make sure you know how to use it. Reading the instructions may be difficult while you have a billowing flame over your stove. 

If you suffered a burn injury or your child was scalded in a kitchen accident, the burn may have been caused by a defective product that carried an unknown risk of injury. The Gilman & Bedigian team is fully equipped to handle the process of bringing a defective product claim against those who were responsible for the injury. Do not hesitate to contact Gilman & Bedigian today for a free consultation.

About the Author

Charles GilmanCharles Gilman
Charles Gilman

As managing partner and co-founder of Gilman & Bedigian, it is my mission to help our clients recover and get their lives back on track. I strongly believe that every person who is injured by a wrongful act deserves compensation, and I will do my utmost to bring recompense to those who need and deserve it.


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