PALM BAY, Fla. – Palm Bay Police Chief Russell "Rusty" Nail has spent previous Thanksgivings tending to hot oil burns for people who were improperly attempting to deep fry turkeys, News 6 partner Florida Today reports.
He's hoping his firefighters won't have to respond to such calls Thursday. They went to Lowes on Malabar Road Friday to show people the dangers of the deep-fry method.
Firefighters across the country typically respond to 2,000 deep-fry accidents every Thanksgiving, the Palm Bay Fire Department. The main cause is people who plop frozen turkeys into their turkey fryers. That causes a reaction which will cause the oil to shoot out of the fryer, as well as flames. Nail said turkeys should be completely thawed out for deep fryers.
Firefighters also advised people to always use the devices outdoors and to stand in a direction where the wind won't splash oil if there's a problem.
Some organizations, such as the National Fire Protection Association, discourage the use of turkey fryers. Palm Bay firefighters said there's a safe way to use them, and hope residents will take the right precautions Thursday.
Nail became chief last summer after several years working for the Orlando Fire Department. That's where he saw some of the deep-frying injuries.
The holiday can prompt other types of fire calls.
"You get some oven fires on Thanksgiving, too" he said.
And one fire the department had to go to 2013 happened because a Palm Bay apartment resident fell asleep while cooking. The fire alarm woke up the sleeping chef, according to a report.
The devices can be dangerous, but proper use will keep you and your family safe.