Hopefully everyone is enjoying summer with family and friends and putting that grill to good use. But did you know July is the peak month for grilling fires. Some of you may be familiar with the safety tips in this post when it comes to grilling, but it never hurts to review this information.
The Peters Township Fire Department wants you to be safe while grilling.
General safety tips:
• Read the instructions and safety warnings before using the grill.
• Grilling is an outdoor activity. Never bring your grill in the house or in the garage. Both charcoal and gas grills can pose a serious carbon monoxide risk indoors.
• Keep your grill a safe distance from your home or deck railings.
• Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill.
• Never leave the grill unattended.
• Make sure to clean the grill surface before you begin cooking.
• Make sure the grill is on a flat surface so it doesn’t tip over.
• Have a fire extinguisher and baking soda (for grease fires) nearby. Never extinguish a grease fire with water.
NFPA reports that gas grills can lead to disastrous consequences if you are not careful. Between the years 2011-2015, 5 out of 6 (82%) grills involved in home fires were fueled by gas.
• Check the major connection points between the gas tank hose and the regulator and cylinder and where the hose connects to the burners. Tighten if loose.
• Check the gas (propane) tank for potential leaks by applying soap and water to the gas tank hose and turning on the gas tank. If there are no bubbles, the tank is safe to use. If there are bubbles, the tank is leaking and needs to be serviced. If the leak doesn’t stop, call the fire department.
• Light the grill with the cover off to prevent gas build up.
• If you smell gas while cooking, turn off your gas tank and burners. If the gas leak stops, call and get the tank serviced. If the leak doesn’t stop, call the fire department.
According to the NFPA, Charcoal or other solid-fuel grills are involved in 1300 home fires per year, including 600 structure fires and 700 outside fires annually.
• If you use starter fluid, only use charcoal lighter fluid. Never add charcoal fluid or any other flammable liquid to a fire.
• Keep charcoal fluid out of reach of children and away from heat sources.
• Make sure coals burn out completely and ashes cool at least 48 hours before disposing.
• Discard ashes by wrapping in aluminum foil and placing in a non-combustible container.
• If you must discard of ashes before completely cooled, place in foil and soak with water before placing container.