fryers that use oil become more popular, the number of turkey fryer fires has
increased significantly. Many fire officials agree that the dangers associated
with deep-frying a turkey aren’t worth the risk, even by a well-informed and
- Many units easily tip over,
spilling the hot oil from the cooking pot.
- If the cooking pot is overfilled
with oil, the oil may spill out of the unit when the turkey is placed into
the cooking pot. Oil may hit the burner or flames, causing a fire to
engulf the entire unit.
- Partially frozen turkeys placed
into the fryer can cause a spillover effect. This too may result in an
- With no thermostat controls, the
units also have the potential to overheat the oil to the point of
- The lid and handles on the sides
of the cooking pot get dangerously hot, posing severe burn hazards.
Alabama State Fire Marshal’s Office advises against using a turkey fryer. If
you decide to do it anyway, consider these precautions. Always use fryers
outdoors, on a solid level surface away from buildings and flammable materials.
Never use a fryer on a wooden deck, under a
patio cover, in a garage or enclosed space.
overfill the fryer. Never leave the fryer unattended because, without
thermostat controls, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire. Never
let children or pets near the fryer when in use or after use as the oil can
remain hot for hours. Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts and wear long
sleeves and safety goggles to protect from splatter. Make sure the turkey is
completely thawed before it is placed in a fryer.
If oil begins to smoke, immediately turn the gas supply
off. If a fire is manageable, use an all-purpose fire extinguisher. Never use water to extinguish a grease fire if the fire increases, immediately call the fire
department for help.