Much has been written about how potentially contentious family Thanksgivings may be this year in America resulting from the outcome of the recent election and subsequent discussions about how divided our country seems to be.
As a CPSC Commissioner, my concerns this year are much broader and deeper than simply my own family’s Thanksgiving dinner.
During my time as a Commissioner, I have devoted myself entirely to the job President Obama and the U.S. Senate assigned to me: protecting U.S. consumers from unreasonably dangerous products. I am only one vote, however, out of five Commissioners. In the coming months, I expect that the new administration will identify and install new leadership here at the CPSC. I sincerely hope that such new CPSC leadership will not result in the CPSC sacrificing consumer product safety to the robust demands of the regulated industry (those who import, manufacture or sell consumer products).
I assure you that I will do my very best during the remaining 11 months left in my term to focus on protecting our consumers, particularly our children.
And, so, in furtherance of doing my job which I take so seriously, I want to remind everyone how to safely enjoy the wonderful holiday coming tomorrow.
Thanksgiving is a time for celebration with family, friends, and loved ones. Please remember, however, there are nearly four times as many cooking fires that occur on Thanksgiving Day than on a normal day of the year.
Cooking is the leading cause of home structure fires and injuries in the United States. In 2014, fire departments responded to an estimated 1,730 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving.
- Stay alert and pay attention to food while cooking, especially when frying and sautéing with oil
- Keep flammable objects such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, and towels away from the cooking area
- Make sure your smoke alarms are working—this is a great time to check those batteries
- Resist disabling smoke alarms if they are triggered easily
- Watch children closely and keep them far from hot stovetops
- Keep a fire extinguisher nearby
CPSC discourages the use of turkey fryers. Turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns, CO poisoning, and destruction of property. Use extreme caution if using a turkey fryer, and always use a turkey fryer outdoors. A turkey fryer can go from start to fire in less than a minute!
No matter how you decide to prepare your Thanksgiving turkey, make sure that safety is part of your recipe!
I hope everyone has a safe and happy Thanksgiving!