Thanksgiving Safety Tips for a Healthy Holiday

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it is time to start making plans and getting prepped for the most filling day of the year. But before you begin your gratitude festivities with friends, family, and food, it is crucial to make sure you are taking all necessary safety precautions. Here we have compiled the more important Thanksgiving safety tips to get you through this year without any issues!

Thanksgiving Home Safety

Reports show an average of 2400 residential fires on Thanksgiving day each year, resulting in an average of 5 deaths and 25 injuries. It’s crucial to be aware of fire safety. 

In case of a fire at your family gathering, always have a non-expired fire extinguisher in your kitchen, ready to go, and know how to use it!  Also, check your smoke alarms and make sure that they are all working correctly. 

Fire prevention is key. Don’t overload your outlets by using numerous appliances to prepare your feasts. Spread your cooking out and only plug in the appliances that you are using while you use them. Always stay near the kitchen while you are cooking to keep an eye on your food.

Thanksgiving Travel Safety

The day before Thanksgiving is one of the busiest travel days of the year in the United States. If you plan to leave your home for turkey day, there are some critical Thanksgiving safety tips to remember. 

Secure Your Home

Before you leave, make sure that you have locked all windows and doors. Don’t leave any keys outside of your house, even if they are hidden. Make sure to cancel your mail and your paper deliveries while you are gone, or ask a neighbor to grab them for you each day. 

Be Cautious 

Never post on social media where you are planning to go for Thanksgiving or when you are leaving. This gives intruders the green light because they know you will be gone. Set your alarm system and have neighbors keep an eye on your home and cars while you are away.

Road Travel Preparation

Make sure your car is maintained and inspected before you begin any kind of road trip this holiday season. Have a trusted mechanic check your tires, oil, fluids, wipers, and engine. Fill your tank up with gas the night before you leave to save time!

Check the weather conditions and traffic conditions before you leave and throughout your trip. November can have an unexpected range of weather, and it is best to plan accordingly and leave plenty of time for your travels. Be sure and check the weather for your trip home, too, and adjust for any snow or rainstorms. 

Drive safely and try to make the majority of your trip during the day time. Leaving early in the morning after a good night’s rest will ensure maximum daylight and optimum driving conditions. Take lots of rest breaks and bring plenty of toys and games to keep the kids entertained.

Flight Preparation

Airports are going to be crowded and bustling on and around Thanksgiving. Allow yourself extra time to get through security and make it to your flight. Allow for more than two hours to get through security. 

Carry travel-sized hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes in your carry-on so that you can stay clean in the busy airport and avoid sickness. Wear masks and keep a safe distance from others to follow covid regulations. 

Again, bring lots of fun things for the kids to play with, especially if it is a long flight!

Thanksgiving Food Safety

1 in 6 Americans get sick from foodborne illness annually, so it is necessary to be especially careful on Thanksgiving. To avoid sickness, follow these simple thanksgiving food safety tips. 

Food Prep Tips

Make sure you wash your hands before cooking, and you keep everything clean. Wash counters and utensils often to avoid cross-contamination. Use separate cutting boards for meat, cooked food, and raw foods. Make sure all food is fresh and thoroughly washed before you start cooking.

Turkey Preparation

Thaw your turkey in the refrigerator no longer than two days before your Thanksgiving holiday. Always check the internal temperature of your turkey before serving it. If it is any less than 165 degrees Fahrenheit in the thickest area, it could potentially spread salmonella or cause food poisoning. 

Cook your meat thoroughly and refrigerate all leftovers within two hours. Keep leftovers for no more than four days.

Thanksgiving Family Safety

With friends and family all coming together, keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe is vital. 

Keep Your Children Safe

Keep your kids out of the kitchen while you are cooking. The kitchen is full of safety hazards! Especially watch them around the stove while you are cooking hot food. They should be at least 3 feet away from the stove to avoid getting burned.

Keep all knives and other cooking equipment away from children and out of reach. Keep electric cords from appliances and eclectic knives out of reach of children. Never leave your children alone in a room with cooking food or with lit candles. 

Keeping Your Pet Safety

Amongst the festivities, try and remember these Thanksgiving safety tips for pets.

If you decide to give your pet a piece of your turkey, make sure to provide them with some without any bones. Avoid feeding your pets any foods with herbs and spices; it can cause them to get sick. 

Be sure to keep your pets out of the kitchen while cooking and think of fun ways to distract them while everyone eats. Chew toys and treats can keep them busy while your family enjoys your meal. 

Self-Care

Overeating is an all-too-familiar feeling for most of us on Thanksgiving. Try to pace yourself and avoid an upset stomach and a food coma after dinner. Start with one plate of food and wait an hour or two before getting seconds. Additionally, watch how much alcohol you consume and keep it at a safe and manageable level.

Conclusion

These are just a few of the ways you can avoid most Thanksgiving injuries and incidents. Preparedness is key for a safe Thanksgiving. With good common sense and proper judgment, everyone can have a safe and happy Thanksgiving dinner.

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