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Thanksgiving Day Safety Tips

Happy Thanksgiving from AOGF!

We hope everyone has a very happy and safe Thanksgiving. With that in mind, below are tips on staying safe this holiday season.
Avoid Turkey Frying Dangers
With Thanksgiving fast approaching, thoughts turn to turkey, dressing and pumpkin pie. Delicious deep-fried turkey, historically prevalent in the southern states, is growing in popularity around the country thanks to celebrity chefs such as Emeril Lagasse. The only problem is that the turkey fryers used to create this succulent dish can be unsafe.

Turkey fryers are devices, resembling a large commercial coffee pot, that are filled with oil heated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Turkeys are placed in this hot oil to fry the birds. The big problem, though, is that people often fill the fryers too full of oil, and it overflows when the bird is placed inside. This cascading oil hits the heating flames below, causing an instant fire. In addition, the turkey fryers are often quite unstable and easy to tip over. Lastly, many of these fryers lack adequate thermostat controls. Thus, the units have the potential to overheat the oil to the point of combustion.

But for those people who insist on using their turkey fryers, the following tips are offered:

  • Always use turkey fryers outdoors a safe distance from buildings and any other burnable materials.
  • Never use turkey fryers on wooden decks or in garages.
  • Make sure the fryers are used on a flat surface to reduce the chance of accidental tipping.
  • Never leave the fryer unattended since most units lack proper thermostat controls. If people do not watch the fryer carefully, the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire.
  • Never let children or pets near the fryer when in use. Even after use, never allow children or pets close to the turkey fryer. The oil inside the cooking pot can remain dangerously hot for hours after use.
  • To avoid oil spillover, do not overfill the fryer. Test it beforehand with water.
  • Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching pot or lid handles. If possible, wear safety goggles to protect eyes from oil splatter.
  • Keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby.

Copyright 2010
International Risk Management Institute, Inc.

Antler Alert
The number of deer-related auto collisions in the U.S. has increased by 7.7 percent over the last year, according to State Farm. The nation's leading auto insurer reports this jump follows a three-year period during which such collisions dropped 2.2 percent.
Drivers gearing up for holiday travel should be on high alert, as November is the month when deer-vehicle encounters are most likely. In fact, State Farm Insurance Company's claims data shows more than 18 percent of all deer-related automotive mishaps take place during November, with October and December trailing closely behind (second and third, respectively). These findings are not too surprising, when deer mating season is taken into consideration.
In terms of a geographic breakdown for deer-related auto claims, for the sixth year in a row, West Virginia tops the list of states for deer-driver confrontations. South Dakota moved from third to second on the list. The likelihood of a licensed driver in that state hitting a deer within the next year is 1 in 68. Iowa (1 in 71.9) dropped from second to third. Michigan (1 in 72.4) is a close fourth jumping one position from fifth. Pennsylvania (1 in 76) slipped one spot to fifth place. The state in which deer-vehicle mishaps are least likely is still Hawaii (1 in 6,801). The odds of a driver in Hawaii colliding with a deer between now and 12 months from now are approximately equal to the odds that any one person will be struck by lightning during his or her lifetime.
* Information courtesy of PropertyCasualty360.com.
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