According to the National Fire Protection Association, gas and charcoal grills caused an average of 3,400 structure fires and 4,900 outdoor fires in or on home properties in 2005, resulting in a combined direct property loss of $137 million. To make sure your next barbecue doesn’t go up in flames, the Home Safety Council recommends the following safety tips:
Designate the grilling area a “No Play Zone” keeping kids and pets well away until grill equipment is completely cool.
Before using, position your grill at least 10 feet away from other objects, including the house and any shrubs or bushes.
Always stay by the grill when cooking.
Only use starter fluid made for barbecue grills when starting a fire in a charcoal grill.
Before using a gas grill, check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line to be sure it is working properly and not leaking.
Never use a match to check for leaks. If you detect a leak, immediately turn off the gas and don’t attempt to light the grill again until the leak is fixed.
Never bring a barbecue grill indoors, or into any unventilated space. This is both a fire and carbon monoxide poisoning hazard.