There are few things Americans love more than getting together with family and friends and sharing a meal, especially on Thanksgiving. According to the United States Fire Administration (USFA), an estimated 2,000 Thanksgiving Day fires occur in homes each year, and the leading cause is cooking.

As you prepare for the holiday, keep these tips from the USFA in mind to stay safe:

Smoke free. Make sure you have smoke alarms on every level of your home, outside each sleeping area and in every bedroom. Test smoke alarms monthly and replace them if they are 10 years old or older.

Watch the stove. Never leave cooking food unattended.

Box out. Keep oven food packaging and other combustibles away from burners and heat sources.

Slow heat. Heat cooking oil slowly and watch it closely; it can ignite quickly.

Dress appropriately. Don’t wear loose sleeves while working over hot stove burners; they can melt, ignite or get caught on handles of pots and pans, leading to spilling hot oil and food.

Enforce the kids table. Have a “kid-free zone” of at least 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot foods or drinks are prepared or carried.

Cover up. Keep a lid nearby to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the stovetop. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cool.

Learn about more ways to protect your loved ones from fires at the United States Fire Administration.

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