Be safe this holiday on the roads and in the kitchen

Published 7:00 am Thursday, November 27, 2014

As you head to the homes of friends and family to celebrate Thanksgiving, keep your mind vigilant on safety, both on the roads and in the kitchen.
Troopers with the Mississippi Highway Patrol will be out in force to protect travelers from dangerous drivers.
Increased patrols began yesterday evening, and will continue until Sunday at midnight. While on patrol these officers will be looking for impaired, distracted and reckless driving violations.
Last year there were two deaths related to traffic accidents during the Thanksgiving holiday in Mississippi. This year that number should be zero.
If you must drink during this week’s festivities, be sure to have a designated driver.
Food safety is just as important as vehicle safety.
When cooking the holiday bird, ensure it is thawed completely. A frozen turkey will not cook fully, leaving those who consume it vulnerable to foodborne illness. As always, wash your hands thoroughly before alternating between handling raw and cooked foods. Raw food, especially poultry products like turkey, carries bacteria that can cross contaminate other foods. All surfaces used to prepare a raw turkey should also be washed before being used to prepare other foods. The internal temperature of a cooked turkey should be at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
If you are especially brave and want to try your hand at frying a turkey at home, never fry a frozen bird. There are a number of videos online that show just how dangerous frying a frozen turkey can be. Even if the turkey is thawed and all precautions are taken, have a charged fire extinguisher on hand just in case.
Always fry a turkey outside the home away from any structures and avoid splashing oil while placing the turkey in the pot or while removing it from the oil.
And, as with any cooking appliance, never leave them unattended while cooking.
So, have a safe and happy holiday and enjoy your time with friends and family.

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