Summer Grilling Safety | SERVPRO® of Montgomery
What better way to spend a summer night than grilling out with your loved ones? Summertime is the season for enjoying hamburgers and hotdogs out by the swimming pool with ice-cold lemonade in hand. While one may think it is easy to light the grill and start cooking, there are a few safety measures you should take.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) warns families that the onset of the summer season also marks a rise in home fires started by outdoor grilling activities. According to the NFPA, on average, 10,600 home fires are started yearly by grills. July is the peak month for grill fires, followed by June, May, and August.
Did you know that 61% of U.S. households own a gas grill? 64% own at least one outdoor BBQ, grill, or smoker. The popularity of this outdoor cooking equipment combined with longer, warmer days creates a unique fire hazard that should be taken seriously.
The NFPA offers these essential tips for fire-safe grilling.
For Gas and Propane Grills
Always check the gas tanks for leaks before using them. Clean the connection between the propane tank’s cylinder valve and regulator output with soapy water or a specific leak detecting solution. The cylinder valve must be slowly opened. If there is a leak, bubbles will form.
Opening the lid to a gas grill before lighting is essential for safety. Gas can quickly fill your grill if the top is closed, causing the flame not to be able to escape and creating an explosion.
For Charcoal Grills
Only use charcoal starter fluid to start the fire. NEVER add it or any flammable liquids to a fire that is already burning. It can cause an uncontrollable fire causing harm to any structure or persons around you.
Also, ensure coals are completely cool before you dispose of them in a metal container.
For All Grills
Place your grill far away from any structure as well as deck railings. Do not place under eaves or branches. Maintain clear surroundings near your grill. Grills need proper ventilation to avoid carbon monoxide and smoke building up to dangerous levels.
Remove grease and fat buildup from grills and tray after each use. Cleaning will improve the safety of your grill and the taste of your food.
- Never leave the grill unattended when in use.
- Keep children and pets at least 3 feet away from the grill.
- Clothing is highly flammable. Keep shirt tails, sleeves, and apron strings tucked in, so they do not dangle over the grill.
- If the flame goes out on your grill, wait to re-light! A minimum of five minutes should pass by before restarting your fire.
- Have baking soda on hand for a grease fire and a fire extinguisher nearby for other fires. If you do not have a fire extinguisher, keep a sand bucket next to the grill. NEVER use water to put out a grease fire.
Basic precautions set the stage for a safe and enjoyable outdoor cooking experience. Life is unpredictable, but you can take steps to control the risk of house fires. Whether you are a summer grilling warrior or a year-round grilling pro, we can all agree that the only smoke we want to smell is the sweet aroma of steaks and vegetables cooking.
SERVPRO® of Montgomery specializes in fire and water restoration, helping to remediate damage for commercial and residential customers. Contact us today at 334.284.1612 for all your restoration needs.