ESFI recommends taking the following safety precautions to ensure that this special time of year does not result in tragedy for young holiday chefs and kitchen helpers:

  • Watch children closely in the kitchen. They must be supervised at all times when an electric or gas stove is within reach.  
  • Never leave the kitchen when something’s frying, grilling, or broiling.  A fire or accident can happen in an instant.
  • Keep children at least three feet away from all cooking appliances.  
  • Never hold a child while cooking or when removing hot food from the microwave, oven or stove.
  • Turn pot handles in, away from reaching hands.
  • Use the back burners on the cooktop whenever possible.
  • Hot tap water scalds can be prevented by installing anti-scald devices on water faucets or by lowering the setting on water heater thermostats to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or below. * 
  • Once your holiday meal is ready, check that the stove and oven are turned off and that other kitchen appliances are unplugged and out of reach. 

* Lowering water heater temperature to 120 degrees Fahrenheit or below can increase the chance of bacteria growth. Those with weakened immune systems should consult with their doctor before lowering the temperature of their water heaters below 140 degrees Fahrenheit.  

Did You Know?

Children under the age of 5 are almost eight times as likely to die in a fire caused by playing with heat sources than the general public (NFPA).