Families all over Southwestern Pennsylvania are gearing up for a joyous holiday season. For home chefs, this means whipping up delicious meals for friends and family, including turkey and all the trimmings. If you plan on hosting a holiday gathering in your home this season, ADT recommends the following tips.

Make a fire safety plan

Before you actually start cooking, make sure your home is outfitted with the necessary safety measures in the event of a fire. Fire alarms are key in this regard, and they should be tested monthly to ensure they’re operational. Having a fire extinguisher on hand is also a good idea. Make sure your fire extinguisher has been serviced properly and that you’re fully aware of how to use it.

Stay in the kitchen while cooking

Accidents can happen when you leave a stove unattended. If a pot boils over or a pan catches fire, you could be looking at a major catastrophe. There is also the risk that one of your guests could accidentally get burned, which will lead to a trip to the ER. By staying in the kitchen and keeping distractions to a minimum, you’ll be able to prevent a serious accident from occurring.

Keep clutter at bay

A clean kitchen not only makes cooking easier, it also greatly decreases your risk of fire. The best course of action is to discard trash as you go; this means getting rid of paper and plastic packaging, which could ignite when too close to an open flame. Also, make sure other flammable items, such as hand towels or oven mitts, are also kept a safe distance.