American Red Cross issues safety reminders for the holiday season

As Thanksgiving approaches, the American Read Cross of Northern Nevada reminds everyone that safety should be a key ingredient in holiday activities. While Thanksgiving celebrations may be different due to the coronavirus pandemic, what remains the same is the need prevent cooking fires and kitchen accidents.

“Cooking activities increase during Thanksgiving and through the holidays,” said Mary Powell, executive director of the Northern Nevada Chapter. “Unfortunately, cooking is the leading cause of home fires across the country. By adding preventative safety measures, we can reduce the risk of home fires, injuries, and property damage.”


Cook your feast safely

As holiday cooking activities begin, don’t forget to include these important safety ingredients;

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.

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.

Avoid wearing loose clothing or dangling sleeves while cooking.

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.

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.

Turn pot handles to the back of the stove, so no one bumps them or pulls them over.

Use a timer to remind yourself that the stove or oven is on. Check the kitchen before going to bed or leaving home to ensure all stoves, ovens and small appliances are turned off.


Be prepared for a potential home fire situation

Understand where the fire risks are in your home.

Know your exit options.

Plan a response with your family.

Make sure your home has a working smoke alarm. It’s one of the easiest ways to protect your home and family from injuries, death, and destruction of property.

Purchase an “ABC” rated fire extinguisher or ensuring the one you have is fully charged. An extinguisher with an ABC rating is suitable for use with fires involving ordinary combustibles, flammable liquids and energized electrical equipment. Keep it within easy reach in the kitchen.


Stay safe from COVID-19

For current guidelines related to COVID-19 and Thanksgiving travel and gatherings, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at


Download the free Red Cross First Aid app for instant access on how to control bleeding, help someone who is choking and other scenarios. Search “American Red Cross” in app stores.


Be Red Cross ready

You’ll be prepared for emergencies anytime of the year.

Take advantage of Red Cross disaster preparedness training through the Be Red Cross Ready program, which helps families and individuals become ready for an emergency. Through online materials, participants learn skills to evacuate safely and efficiently from a home fire, emergency, or disaster area. You’ll learn how to Get a Kit; Make a Plan for safe evacuation; and Be Informed of changing and potentially hazardous conditions.                  Learn more about Red Cross Ready at