A turkey fryer is an apparatus for deep-frying a turkey. It can also be a dangerous part of your holiday meal. Since deep-frying a turkey uses oil over an open flame, it presents some hazards that apparently not all users are aware of. Illinois Department of Insurance spokesman Mark Terry says a little common sense goes a long way.
Another tip is to keep an eye on the oil, as most fryers do not have thermostats, so the oil will continue to heat until it catches fire if it's not adjusted. Illinois has the second most reported turkey fryer fires in 2011, with 18 that were bad enough the fire department was called. Texas led the nation with 19. Fried turkey first became popular in the south, but has caught on in other parts of the United States because of the reduced time it takes to cook a turkey as opposed to other methods.