Avoid Personal Injury When Making Thanksgiving Deep Fried Turkey
Southerners love deep fried turkey during the Thanksgiving season. Turkey meat can be notoriously dry, and deep-frying the bird is a great way to keep the meat soft and succulent.
Although deep fried turkey is delicious and rapidly becoming part of the Thanksgiving tradition across the South, the frying process can be extremely dangerous. Just after Halloween in Myrtle Beach, SC, the city’s fire fighters demonstrated the dangers of deep fryers at a local Costco store.
“We want to make sure we thaw the turkey out, make sure it’s not wet, because water and hot oil do react violently,” said Lt. Christian Sliker of Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue.
The difference in temperature between frozen turkey and boiling hot oil can, according to dozens of personal injury reports each year, cause an explosion of hot oil, or even the destruction of the deep fryer itself.
Because of the size of the deep fryer, it is important to keep it outdoors and on a level surface. The drum should be at least 10 feet away from anything flammable, and that includes deck overhangs.
The average turkey will take about an hour to deep fry at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, or about 3 to 4 minutes per pound of bird meat. When you put your turkey into your deep fryer, be sure to turn the flame off until the bird is completely submerged – if any oil spills over the side of the drum and comes in contact with the flame, it could cause a grease fire.
According to Sliker, home cooking fires are more than twice as likely to happen at Thanksgiving as any other time of year. The fires are not just because of deep fried turkeys, but also because of neglected ovens and stove tops.
“Holiday cooking is a huge problem. We want to make sure people stay safe. By staying safe, we mean obviously making sure they have the right precautions, extinguisher, smoke detectors and making sure they have an escape plan in their family.”
Here are some additional safety tips for Thanksgiving deep fried turkey:
- Remove anything from inside the turkey, including giblets and thermometers.
- Use cotton twine to tie the turkey’s legs, rather than synthetic fibers, which can melt and catch on fire
- Cut away excess fat, which can melt and bubble up the oil, leading to a grease fire
- Fill your deep fryer with water first, and submerge the turkey in it. That way, you will know how much oil to use without overflowing the fryer and causing a grease fire
- Be sure to use a basket or wire hook to submerge the turkey, not your hands
- Make sure any marinade used on the turkey is drained away, otherwise the excess liquid could cause the grease to bubble over
- Turn off the flame again before you remove the turkey from the oil
- Always keep a fire extinguisher nearby, and never leave your fryer unattended!
The Strom Law Firm Cautions South Carolinians To Consider Safety When Using Turkey Deep Fryers, and Wishes Everyone a Happy Thanksgiving
The Strom Law Firm was founded in Columbia, SC sixteen years ago. The experienced attorneys at Strom Law encourage South Carolinians to use caution when cooking this holiday season, and call emergency services if accidents do occur. However, if you have used a product with all reasonable caution and the device still harmed you, you may be entitled to compensation. The personal injury attorneys at the Strom Law Firm offer free, confidential consultations to discuss your case, including cases against turkey deep fryers. Contact us today. 803.252.4800.