The end of fall brings bare tree branches, short days and Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the year, spend time with family and cook your best recipes. However, the kitchen can be one of the most dangerous places on any holiday. The number of cooking fires rises during the holiday season. According to the NFPA, fire departments responded to the most fires on Thanksgiving in 2017 followed by Christmas Day, Christmas Eve and the day before Thanksgiving. As the holiday season begins, keep the following tips top of mind to help you avoid a fire disaster.

Cleaning Schedule

Clean appliances regularly. Stuck-on food and grease are highly flammable. Use vinegar and baking soda to clean your oven with kitchen items you probably already have.

  1. Coat your oven in a baking soda paste. Make paste with half a cup of baking soda and a few tablespoons of water.
  2. Let sit for 12 hours.
  3. Wipe off residue with a damp kitchen towel.
  4. Spray vinegar on stuck on baking soda residue.
  5. Wipe down oven until clean.

Stove Top

Always stay in the kitchen when the stovetop is on. Keep flammables like oven mitts, kitchen towels and food packages away from your stove. According to the NFPA, unattended cooking is the #1 cause of kitchen fires.


Avoid leaving the house so you can monitor your turkey. Use a timer to remind you when your baked, simmered or roasted food should be checked.


Keep children at least three feet away from the stove and oven. Plan an activity to keep children out of the kitchen while the adults cook.


When decorating for the holidays, make sure you keep certain areas clear. Keep decorations away from your kitchen. Even placing them on the ceiling or next to your stove can be a fire hazard. All it takes is one of your decorations falling to start a fire. Also, avoid placing decorations near exits. In case of a fire emergency, you need a clear path to evacuate your home.

Hot Liquids

Gravy, steam and hot apple cider can cause serious burns. In addition, hot oil can cause fires. Always take extreme caution around hot liquids. Speaking of oil, never put out grease fires with water. Smother it with a lid and turn off the heat source.


You might dress up on Thanksgiving but make sure you’re not wearing anything flowy. Tight-fitting or short sleeves are best to avoid a fire disaster.

Safety First

Keep a fire extinguisher in your kitchen and make sure you replace batteries and test fire detectors regularly. When in doubt, evacuate your home and call 911.

ServiceMaster Professional Cleaning in West Tennessee offers a comprehensive suite of fire and water damage restoration services. Businesses and homeowners alike trust us in their time of need. We’ll guide you through the entire restoration process. From working with your insurance company to providing timely updates, we handle it all. Contact us at 888-930-3351 to learn more about our services. We respond 24/7 to emergency damage restoration requests, even during the holiday season.


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