Don’t Burn the Bird – Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District

Don’t Burn the Bird

We’re gearing up for Thanksgiving and that means putting a request in for a turkey at your local supermarket and making sure you can end the holiday with no family drama. While we don’t have any tips on keeping the drama at bay, we do have the resources to help you not burn the bird – or your house down this Thanksgiving.


We get it, deep-frying your turkey is delicious and a popular way to prepare your Thanksgiving bird. However, it is one of the leading causes of home fires on Thanksgiving Day. Each year, deep fryer fires result in more than $15 million in property damages, so here are some tips to keep in mind to keep your home, and your dinner, safe.

1. Make sure that you wear protective gear. This may seem silly, but the temperature needed to cook a turkey combined with splattering oil can cause burns on your skin and eyes. Have an apron, oven mitts, and glasses on while cooking in the fryer.
2. Deer fry in an open, outdoor area. Avoid using your fryer in your garage or on a wooden deck as these areas are prone to cause explosions/fires. Make sure that you are not cooking under a low hanging tree or near flammable brush. Never use a deep fryer inside.
3. Don’t mix oil and water. Water causes the oil to bubble and spill over, which can cause a fire. Stick with turkey marinades and rubs and never attempt to cook a frozen turkey.
4. Have a fire extinguisher on hand. A medium-sized ABC dry chemical extinguisher is recommended. Always remember to NEVER throw water on an oil fire.
5. Keep kids away from the deep fryer. Make sure that the area is far away from outside activity and don’t let your kids play near the fryer.

A few recipes for you to try out on your deep-fried turkey!


Preparing your Thanksgiving turkey in the oven is one of the most common ways to cook your bird, but did you know that there are some safety concerns with this method?

1. Make sure that you have thawed your turkey correctly and safely. When a turkey is left out at room temperature for more than two hours, its temperature becomes unsafe.
2. Handle your stuffing safely. Raw poultry can contaminate anything it touches, so make sure that you are preparing it away from other food, clean the surfaces once you are done preparing the bird, and wash your hands thoroughly after you are done. Don’t handle other food, utensils, or surfaces until you clean your space.
3. Make sure that you set your temperature to at least 325 degrees and place the turkey breast side up in a roasting pan. When you are checking the temperature of the turkey, you want to check the center of the stuffing, and the thickest portions of the breast, thigh and wing joint. Let the turkey stand 20 minutes before removing all of the stuffing.

A twist on your baking your Thanksgiving turkey!


It’s said that you might receive a standing ovation if you bring that turkey in from the grill. Not to mention that by freeing up precious oven space, you can have plenty of room to whip up your favorites sides… and pie.

1. Use your grill outdoors, away from siding and deck railings.
2. Make sure that your grill is clean and remove grease build-up. Open the gas grill lid is open before lighting.
3. Don’t stuff your turkey. It’s hard to cook the stuffing fully on the grill.
4. Keep a fire extinguisher near the grill and make sure there is nothing flammable nearby.
5. Grill turkeys that are 16 pounds or less.

Get to grilling! Recipes that will even have your pets drooling.

We hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving this year and are able to spend the day surrounded by friends and family. We hope that you take safety into consideration as you begin cooking the day away and adhere to the tips we mentioned above. Share your holiday fun with us on Facebook and as always, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to your friends at the Carbondale Fire District.