While the focus has been on COVID-19 prevention going into the Thanksgiving holiday, there is one danger that exists every year.

You may not be having many guests at your table for the feast, but the risk that has been lingering for many years are the dangers in the kitchen or out in the yard. The American Red Cross is warning those making Thanksgiving dinners about the risk of cooking fires.

Whether you're making the turkey the traditional way, in the oven, or testing your turkey frying skills there are several risks involved in either. According to The Red Cross, Thanksgiving is one of the peak days for cooking fires. They say that one of the major causes of cooking fires around the holiday, is unattended cooking. That is only one of the major causes of Turkey Day blazes.

The American Red Cross is offering the following tips so that you can have a truly safe Thanksgiving holiday.

  1. Keep an eye on what you fry! Never leave cooking food unattended. If you must leave the kitchen, even for a short period of time, turn off the stove.
  2. Move items that can burn away from the stove. This includes dishtowels, bags, boxes, paper and curtains. Also keep children and pets at least three feet away.
  3. Avoid wearing loose clothing while cooking.
  4. When frying food, turn the burner off if you see smoke or if the grease starts to boil. Carefully remove the pan from the burner.
  5. Keep a pan lid or a cookie sheet nearby. Use it to cover the pan if it catches on fire. This will put out the fire. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled.

Another practice you should engage in year-round, but most importantly ahead of Thursday is to test your smoke detectors. Also, just like you did in your school days, make sure you and your family have a rehearsed home escape plan in the event of a major fire.

For more fire safety tips from The Red Cross you can visit redcross.org/fire. For American Red Cross COVID-19 safety tips you can go to redcross.org/coronavirus. Have a Happy and safe Thanksgiving!

Here are some tips for self-care during the pandemic: