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Avoid an emergency Thanksgiving invite to the fire department

Turkey fryer fire
Posted at 7:54 PM, Nov 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-24 22:25:22-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — Thanksgiving is about gathering with family and friends for a great meal. Unfortunately prepping for the meal often leads to fires.

Firefighters in Colorado Springs offered a demonstration of how deep frying a turkey can quickly become dangerous and destructive. A turkey still a little wet, lowered into a pot with too hot and too much oil caused an eruption of oil that hit flames from the burner below. The result was a burst of flames five to six feet high.

A nearby firefighter hit the flames with a stream of water for demonstration purposes. “To show you, don’t put water on a grease fire,” said Captain Mike Smaldino with Colorado Springs Fire Department. It caused another large burst of flames.

The next move showed why it is good to keep a fire extinguisher in your home. “If you do have access to that dry chemical extinguisher, that’s what we want to use because that’s what’s actually smothers that fire,” said Smaldino. The grease fire was out in seconds.

The point of the demonstration was not to discourage frying a turkey. It was to encourage safe cooking and fire prevention.

The warnings go beyond frying a turkey. “Tis the season of cooking fires,” said Smaldino. Food fires are the number one fire related call-out for Colorado Springs Fire Department. Those calls typically increase in colder months and during the holidays when more cooking happens.